I’m Sorry

“In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can’t get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God’s part.”

Matthew 6:14-15 MSG

When Jesus talked about prayer, He talked about forgiveness.

He said to ask for it daily and give it daily.

Forgiveness is a form of love, maybe the best form of love.

Holding onto anger, bitterness and resentment clogs your soul, fogs your mind and mars your perspective.

Your Father loves you so much that He wants you to daily deal with it.

Asking God for forgiveness daily clears anything that is between you and God.

Choosing to forgive others clears up things before they become so sticky, so rooted, so deep that dealing with it is overwhelming.

Ask for forgiveness.

Forgive those who have hurt or offended you on purpose or by accident.

Forgive them for your sake and theirs.

When you receive God’s forgiveness for the little stupid things you do as well as the monumentally stupid things you do, it becomes much easier to forgive others for the same.

God’s love is big enough to forgive you and big enough to help you forgive others.

Yes, even that person that you are thinking of right now.

With God all things are possible.

Pray everyday and make forgiveness a part of it.

When you do God will use it to transform your life.

Let It Go

God doesn’t deny that bad things happen or that people will take advantage of you but He also doesn’t abandon you to it either.

Jesus said, “And if someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff.  Live generously.”

Matthew 5:38-42 MSG

You are not meant to carry the heavy load of resentment or regret.

Jesus is saying that when someone takes advantage of you, give them what you have and move on with your life.  Don’t keep reliving the unfair treatment you received (and can’t change).

Let it go. 

Forgive them.

In this way, you will be living in the abundance of God’s love instead of the famine of your past hurts.

Forgiveness is vital to your soul and it is a journey Jesus wants to walk with you through.

It is vital because you are valuable.

What resentment or regret is weighing you down?

What grudge is poisoning your soul?

Bring them all to Jesus and lay each one at the foot of the cross.

Then, take a deep breath and allow Him to fill the newly evacuated space with the cleansing power of His love.

What Pride Is

Pride is the thing that keeps you from asking for help because you don’t want others to think you have a problem, even if you do.

Pride is the thing that keeps you silent when you should speak because you don’t want to cause trouble or cause a scene even if what you need to say is true.

Pride is the thing that prevents you from reconciling because you are right and being right is more important than a person.

Pride keeps you safe.

Except it doesn’t.

It keeps you isolated.

No matter how many people you have in your life, trying to love them through the lens of pride keeps you disconnected and self protected.

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud.”

1 Corinthians 13:4 NIV

You are loved and you are made to love others freely, fully, with hope and joy.

Love is not proud.

Lay down your pride and let love heal what is broken.

What Forgiveness Is

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.”  

Colossians 3:13 NIV

Forgiveness breaks the power of the past.

It is a choice to let God have it, hold it, and be responsible for it- whatever it is. 

Forgiveness is taking the power away from someone else and giving it back to God. 

You don’t have to trust someone to forgive them.

They don’t have to know you forgive them.

They don’t have to be sorry in order for you to forgive them.

Forgiveness is not a feeling, it is a choice.

Forgiveness is not about restoring trust in them, it is about trusting God with them

What you do have to do is make the choice to give them to God.

And then every day after, make the choice to give them to God.

Keep doing that until the feelings lines up with the decision.

Forgiveness is about freedom – yours.

Who do you need to forgive today?

Not A One Only Time Deal

“and then a total life-change through the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed in His name to all nations.”

Luke 24:47 MSG

Forgiveness is not a one time only deal.

It is not a one and done.

It isn’t reserved for “the first time” you recognize you need help and you need God.

It is an every day, in the moment, after the knee-jerk reaction, after the words you wish you hadn’t said, opportunity God holds out to you.

Ask for it.

The more the better.

Make time for it – right now.

Be brave.

Get real with God and receive right this minute, forgiveness.

You are worth it.

Every Regret

“You have searched me, Lord, and you know me.”

Psalm‬ ‭139‬:‭1‬ NIV

Jesus knows every regret you have ever had and why you have it.

He can turn a memory of disappointment into a moment of discovery, a revelation of wisdom or a catalyst for change.

Useless regrets are only regrets that you don’t learn from.

Through love and forgiveness, He can transform all your regrets into gifts that will grow you.

Let Him.

Purify My Heart

“The crucible for silver and the furnace for gold, but the Lord tests the heart.”  ‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭17:3‬ ‭NIV

A crucible is used to melt the silver and gold so the impurities of the precious metal will rise to the top.

When it does, the refiner will skim it off. 

It is the same with your heart.

The Great Refiner can use the fires of life to expose things that don’t belong there.

In His kindness, He will bring them to the surface to clear them away.

When He brings it to the surface, it means that you are ready to deal with it.

Your job is to stay in His hand, deal with what comes up (which almost always begins by forgiving yourself or others) and allow the healing balm of His love to make you new.

How is your heart? 

What is Jesus bringing up?

What do you need to do with it?

Go Toward It

Relationships are not easy.

They take grace, forgiveness, honesty, and courage.

You may think that it would be easier and simpler to withdraw, it is not.

Don’t cheat yourself or others by withdrawing in fear.

Persevere. 

Go toward the problem. 

Reach out. 

God can make a way where there seems to be no way.

Quiet the fear-filled beat of your heart and listen for the encouraging whisper of the Holy Spirit.

“May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had,”‭‭ 

Romans‬ ‭15:5‬ ‭NIV‬‬

What Forgiveness Is

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.  

Colossians 3:13 NIV

Forgiveness breaks the power of the past.

It is a choice to let God have it, hold it, and be responsible for it- whatever it is. 

Forgiveness is taking the power away from someone else and giving it back to God. 

You don’t have to trust someone to forgive them.

They don’t have to know you forgive them.

They don’t have to be sorry in order for you to forgive them.

Forgiveness is not a feeling, it is a choice.

Forgiveness is not about restoring trust in them, it is about trusting God with them

What you do have to do is make the choice to give them to God.

And then every day after, make the choice to give them to God.

Keep doing that until the feelings lines up with the decision.

Forgiveness is about freedom – yours.

Who do you need to forgive today?

Finished

When he had received the drink, Jesus said, “It is finished.” With that, he bowed his head and gave up his spirit.

John‬ ‭19‬:‭30‬ NIV

After the unfair trial.

After the man’s judgment.

After the sentence to death.

After the unbelievable physical pain.

After the unbearable separation from the Father.

After receiving horrific judgment and sin of the world upon Himself.

Before His final breath.

“It is finished.”

My sin paid for. 

My debt paid.

My forgiveness, offered.

My redemption, complete.

My relationship with God, possible.

Before you ever began, He finished it.