Tag Archives: unforgiveness

2 Chron. 2; 1 John 2; Nahum 1; Luke 17

Today, seeing unforgiveness as a start into darkness.

“If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.”

The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” Luke 17:3-5 (NIV)

I just finished reading a book called Recovering from Losses in Life by H. Norman Wright. About giving up anger and resentment, he includes a comment a client made: “Each day I wrote the phrase ‘I forgive you for …’ and then put down the first reason I could think of for not forgiving … Then I thanked [the Lord] for what He was doing, even if I didn’t feel like it. I discovered many things through this: I was full of bitterness. It kept me pinned down and stuck. I didn’t want to forgive. They didn’t deserve it.” (Recovering from Losses in Life, H. Norman Wright, chapter 10, pg 185.)

Sometimes, “I repent” is never uttered. Sometimes wounding continues intentionally. And sometimes forgiveness is not feeling, but action. I am learning this daily, and often it’s not easy. Sometimes I feel like a big fake, putting on smiles and kindness when inside I groan and grieve. A persistent weight that does pin and stick, unforgiveness. But where does it lead? Bitterness? Hatred?

Anyone who claims to be in the light but hates a brother or sister is still in the darkness. Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble. But anyone who hates a brother or sister is in the darkness and walks around in the darkness. They do not know where they are going, because the darkness has blinded them. 1 John 2:9-11 (NIV)

My study notes read: In the Bible hatred and love as moral qualities are not primarily emotions, but attitudes expressed in actions.

Lord, I don’t want to be blinded by darkness. I’m not sure I can trust my feelings, but you are trustworthy. When you tell me forgive, I want to.  Even if it means writing it out on a piece of paper every day, or smiling and acting despite the difficulty. It would be a lot easier if I felt like it in the face of circumstance, but I pray that I will act first–in forgiveness, in love–in hopes my heart will soften enough to feel later. Thank you for forgiving me! And thank you for showing me the very real danger of unforgiveness.

Courtney (66books365)

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Filed under 1 John, Luke, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, New Testament

Gen. 41; Mark 11; Job 7; Rom. 11

Scripture

22“Have[f] faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23“I tell you the truth, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart but believes that what he says will happen, it will be done for him. 24Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” Mark 22-24 (NIV)

Observation/Application

I do wonder what my prayer life would look like if I could boldly and confidently approach the Lord with my requests. I feel something holds me back. I pray for others and their needs without hesitation, but when it comes to me … I have more trouble. And I wonder if it’s my on-going battle with forgiveness. I wish that I could just forgive and have it be over with. Instead, my resentments towards others creep up on me unexpectedly–even when I think I’m over it. And I can feel all kinds of awful rekindled in my heart.

Of course, I can put on the happy face and be civil towards others. I can even take extra steps to show unexpected kindnesses–but these actions are unable to quench this yuck that’s tangled up inside of me. Sometimes, they’re just enough to make me think I have forgiven. Later, I’m taken off guard when hurt feelings flare up. This not only continues to injure my relationships with others, but it hinders my relationship with the Lord and the work I do for him.

Prayer

Father, humbly I approach you with this problem. Please change my heart. Do these wounds stem from an unconscious hierarchy I’ve imagined? Help me to stop putting myself above others. Feed me truth to root out the lies I tell myself about my place in this world … and the motives of others.

Courtney (66books35)

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Filed under M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, Mark, New Testament