The things that you said (or did) really hurt me…. I thought you were my friend. So .. how do I forgive you? And on the other hand, the one who has come against me may truly not care – they seem to want to be my enemy!……And the things that they are saying or doing are creating for me some problems … Father, how shall I deal with this?……
It is indeed interesting that I am led to write this post today – for only this morning I had to decide about the very thing that I just mentioned above to you…..What I did as my response to a strong offense began as a choice – a choice that I did struggle a little over because I had prayed for this person – in the beginning of this.. Indeed, I had prayed for them as I would have wanted someone who knew how to touch God – to pray for me…..
But those prayers appear to have done no good…. NO.. that’s not so! .. For we all make choices about how we respond to God’s dealings with us….. And I cannot hold myself accountable for someone else’s response to God’s dealings with them….. I.m only accountable for how I respond to His dealings with me.
So, this morning I chose to pray again for this individual – and God was so in that prayer time with me – that however things turn out after this, I’m okay… I can stay at peace… Because there was such an outflow of God’s concern for this person’s well being that came through me in prayer – that made it a very special and memorable time between Him and me…. And the very thought of it now ushers in His incredible peace….
We make the choice – to do what He puts in our heart to do – and He gives us the strength….. And along with the strength there is a lingering warmth of the feeling of how much He loves each one of us….So, in the coming days, should my mind try to again rehearse the details of that one’s offense, I will be firm – firm with myself and not allow the negative thoughts to overtake me….I can speak God.s word, stir up a song of praise, start giving Him thanks, or put on gentle worship music to get caught up in as I work.. or just start praying for someone else that has a real need! …..I’ll do whatever it takes to stay free of getting back into that offense.. .
How do I forgive you?.. First is the CHOICE to forgive and move on…. Then we learn as we grow – how to stand and resist the negative thoughts that the enemy may try to send to overtake our mind with renewed offense…. But like it is with building any new habit into our lives – we learn to be patient and to persist – until we realize that we’ve become strong and the place of God’s peace is easier to reach…..
So, understand that when we choose to do the right thing, God is there to give us the added strength to see it through…. And because the strength that He gives is enough …. That is how I will forgive you….