Wednesday, June 1, 2011

No One Can Forget, Who Does Not Forgive

Have you ever heard or said, “Well, I forgive you, but I will never forget what you did!?”

I once heard a well known radio preacher say that only 10% of what we experience in life is what happens to us; the other 90% is our response. You probably have little or no control over the 10% that comes your way, but you do have control over the 90% (your reactions.)

There is so much pain and suffering in homes today. Most of us have undoubtedly had grief of some kind—an abusive father, an overbearing mother, a neglectful mate, a rebellious child, a divorce, the loss of a loved one, disrespect from someone in authority over you. These are just a few things we have had little control over.

I have met people who have been deeply hurt who confess that they refuse to forget the wrong that happened to them. They build a monument of bitterness that requires their constant attention to maintain. They constantly have to polish up the details and replay the words again and again.

They want the person who offended them to feel guilty and shameful for their actions which only keep the flaming embers of unforgiveness red hot! Someone said, “Unforgiveness is like a burning ember that you want to hurl at the person who hurt you: the longer you hold it, the more it burns you!”

There are three things you need to do to overcome the debilitating thinking of never forgetting the wrong done to you. First, stop speaking that! Allow every detail to become vague by not replaying the words or polishing the details. Stop telling yourself that you can’t forget. Start “blessing those who have cursed you and pray for those who have despitefully used you.” Matthew 5:44

Secondly, as you forgive you must release them from guilt. Until you release them from guilt, you will not be released from guilt yourself, because if you sow to the wind, you will reap the whirlwind. Hosea 8:7

Focus on the blood of Jesus. This is what gives you the power to release. You can do this by the Spirit of God in you. “The blood of Jesus cleanses us from all sin.” I John 1:7 All guilt whether given or received, will bow to the blood of Jesus!

Third, start speaking it out loud! Tell the devil, tell yourself, tell your family and friends, and remind God by confessing openly “I will overcome this and forget the pain, because of the blood of Jesus and the word of my testimony.” Rev. 12:11

- Pastor Virgil Amundson