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Monday, February 22, 2016

Power of Love: Forgiveness

1 John 1:8-9 says, "If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

We can't love unconditionally, fully, or limitless if we are bound by unforgiveness. This means that if we hold grudges against those who cross us wrong, we are not loving as Christ calls us to do. If we practice forgiveness, I fully believe that God will extend His grace to us.

Think about it: If God can fully forgive us for our sins, we should be able to forgive those who have wronged us. Jesus even forgave over and over in the Bible. Forgiveness is a fundamental part of our faith. Each time we openheartedly forgive those around us, we are growing closer to God. When we extend grace to though around us, we're showing these people God's grace and love.

Matthew 6:14 tells us, "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you.

We are required to forgive. That doesn't mean for the time or until something happens again. That doesn't mean we say we forgive the person but won't forget. We take these circumstances and we learn from them. We grow with them. There isn't a set amount on how many times we must forgive someone for hurting us. I believe that Christ would want us to continually forgive them and not hold it against them. We are not called to judge the sins of others. Leave that part to God. We should forgive and extend compassion to those who hurt us, regardless of how many times they have done it.

When we choose to hang on to the hurts, we are opening ourselves up to bitterness, resentment, and disgust. These are not attributes of a Christian. How can we call ourselves a Christian if we allow these things into our hearts? (1 John 4:20) 

Are there people who you need to forgive and extend grace to?

I know were a few for me before I sat down to write this, they came to mind. I have openly forgiven them for the hurtful words and actions. 

Perhaps you should do the same!

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