Joshua Randall Englehart on What Does Forgiveness Mean to You?

What does forgiveness mean to you?

What identity does that hold?

What kind of process occurs?

Are their certain conditions in which we are able to forgive and certain ones we are not?

Would you argue with the fact that when we are not forgiving someone, we are making a choice?

Let me rewind though, what does forgiveness mean to you?

We struggle with the thought of not forgiving being a choice because our outlook on forgiveness is perverted and skewed as a culture. I told my church that 3/4 of the world’s lawyers are employed in the United States alone. You are raised to believe that you are owed retribution, that you deserve something for your pain. The very thing or things that the world will tell you that you deserve ironically enough never take that pain away.

Forgiveness is a release of burden on your heart. I know I am talking to the hearts of many when I speak this. By choosing not to forgive you have this belief that you have the one who hurt you by the throat, when in actuality, the transgression itself has you by the throat. You have been affected by this choice to not forgive your whole life. It has impaired you and hindered your ability to love and trust, has it not?

Examine your heart right now as you read this.

Forgiveness does not “ok” the transgression, but simply has it release the grip the transgression has on you and your life. The pain is usually the last to go, but that is ok. The pain is much more bearable when you know the cause of it has been let go. You hit me on my face, I can forgive you, all while knowing there will be a mark and pain still left on my face.

Letting go of the burdens of your life is a process that begins with the choice to forgive. In my belief and Truth, the essence of Christian character commands to forgive because I was forgiven and still am. Jesus Himself says that if we choose not to forgive, we ourselves will not be forgiven (Mark 11:26).

Anger begets anger, turmoil begets turmoil. If we keep living like we are owed something because what has happened to us, we lose sight of the fact that we too have transgressed against others. We keep ourselves grid locked, as the enemy wants us in faith. We never truly even begin to operate in the Holy Spirit because we lack the fruits that show not only our maturity but keep us from being tricked by the schemes of the world (Galatians 5:22 and 2 Peter 1: 3-9). At the end of the day, your only hope for peace in life is choosing to forgive those who have hurt you.

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SOURCE: Christian Post, Joshua Randall Englehart