Forgive and be forgiven

Most of my life, the hardest thing for me has been forgiving someone for something they might have done or said. We all tend to hold a grudge toward someone. It’s called being human.
But that changed for me several years ago. I was at home by myself and began to read my Bible, and as I read, I came to the scripture written in red where Jesus said, “If you cannot forgive, neither can my Father in Heaven.”
We have to forgive others if we want to get to Heaven. Is it fair for Jesus to forgive us from wrongdoing, and then we look at someone else and dare not forgive them?
The truth is, whenever we have that pain inside us not letting us forgive someone, it’s hurting us more than the person we won’t forgive. What if Jesus looked upon us and then turned his back and never forgave us? We would be lost sinners heading for a place called hell.
Wake-up call! It’s by God’s grace that you and I aren’t doing or saying things that keep us in trouble. When we serve God and we are giving him 100 percent, we can forgive and forget. The scars around our hearts will soon soon go away.
But when we keep them bottled up inside us we tend to stay angry, and hardship builds up inside of us. It’s sad to think about but, when someone does a good deed it’s recognized for a moment and later forgotten about. But, when someone does something or might say something to someone, people tend to hang on to the bad things and never forget them. Is that really a Christian attitude?
I’m writing this because a friend of mine called me, and as we talked, she kind of brought up this subject.
When God saves us, he changes us; but he never said, from this day forward you will be perfect and never do anything wrong ever again.
Why? Because we are still human. So, if you’re holding a grudge or feeling like you can never forgive a friend, family member or whoever it may be, stop and think for a moment. Jesus forgave you.
Let that sink in for a moment. Without forgiveness in our hearts, we can never be where we need to be with Christ.
Remember, after Jesus had been beaten and hung on the cross, the only words he said were, “Father, forgive them.” I did paraphrase, but the point is, after all the Roman soldiers had done to him he chose to forgive them.
Whatever is going on with someone that you cannot forgive, think of Jesus on the cross!
Afterwards, it might be a little easier to forgive. Besides, the person that needs your forgiveness is probably hurting just as badly as you are.
Be blessed!
Margie Hood periodically submits columns of a spiritual nature to The Monitor-Herald.

Mack Spencer

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