Wings of Forgiveness

A lot has happened in the year and three months since I last posted. I am still working at the job that I started at the beginning of 2010 and that is going well. I got my own place, started dating someone, joined a church, broke up with the someone and finally started graduate school. Through all of this, I have been through a roller coaster of emotions and am continuously learning about myself while developing a deeper relationship with God. Daily I am confronted with things about myself that I need to change in order to become the person I was meant to be. The most recent thing that God has been dealing with me on is the issue of forgiveness, or rather unforgiveness.

14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. -Matthew 6:14-15

When I was a little girl, I had a dream that has stuck with me just as vividly as the night it happened. In the dream I was sitting on floor, indian style, with my best friend watching one of those old box television sets that sat on the floor (that should tell you how long ago this was). Anyway, we were watching one of those old Gladiator shows…not the ones where people dress up in elbow and knee pads and run around gauntlets for sport, but more like the movie Gladiator where people fought to the death. I’m watching it and then all of sudden, I ‘m in the TV screen and I  am one of the gladiators! Only now, no one is dressed in loin cloths and sandals, but rather full on brightly colored costumes with masks and intricate weapons like curly swords and daggers. It was wild!

So I’m in this ring with people all around me fighting and I am killing off people one by one. Never seeing anyones face because they are concealed by the masks, I would fight and kill one person and then move on to the next. Finally, I started fighting a person who was putting up quite a fight. As we dueled he started repeating to me over and over,

When you finally hate me, I will kill you!

When you finally hate me, I will kill you!

When you finally hate me, I will kill you!

At that point, I woke up. I have never forgotten that dream and for the longest time I didn’t know what it meant. Now I realize that it was symbolic of how many of us live our lives in unforgiveness. Someone hurts you or treats you unfairly and you hold on to the pain and the anger and resentment, not  realizing that the only person that is suffering is you. When we hold on to the pain from the hurts someone else has inflicted upon us, it keeps us in that place of defeat. It keeps us trapped sorrow and unhappiness. We start to live in  land the land of “Woe is me” and “Why do bad things always happen to me?” Meanwhile, the person who has transgressed against you has moved on with their life.

What we fail to realize, however, is that most of the time this prison of unforgiveness that we are living in doesn’t have a lock. We are free to leave at any time. At any time we can choose to free ourselves of the bondage of unforgiveness, but we choose not to in the name of ‘teaching someone a lesson’. Well guess what, the joke is on you! While you are walking around mad at the world and defeated trying to teach someone a lesson, that person has moved on and is living their life. Please understand, Forgiveness is not for the other person, it’s for you. Forgiveness is the tool God gives us to be happy even when people hurt us.

I don’t mean to make it sound as if this is as easy as breathing. I have found it quite difficult to forgive people when I have been hurt, but the only person who has ever stayed hurt is me. You have to decide that you are going to take the control back. Don’t let what someone else did or said dictate how you live your life.  It is your choice and it is your command. God commands us to forgive others as He forgave us. Make no mistake…no one is perfect! At some point in time, we all fall short of His glory, but we can choose to live in victory. You may be thinking, “but I’ve been hurt so  many times! How many times am I supposed to turn the other cheek?”

21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy times seven!”

That’s right! We are to forgive or transgressors an infinite number of times, because that is exactly what God has done for us!

22 Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. 23 They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23

Isn’t it wonderful to know that God’s mercy towards us is new every morning? That means it never stops! He will always forgive us if we come to him and ask for it with a sincere heart! If God can forgive us for anything while He is sinless and perfect, why should those of us who are imperfect sinners (that’s all of us folks) think that we don’t have to?

If you are living in defeat and harboring unforgiveness in your heart. I urge you to start asking God today to teach you how to forgive. Don’t let hatred and unforgiveness kill you.

 


glitter text
Today I am thankful that despite my imperfections, my Father in Heaven sees fit to forgive me and I am thankful that he will continue to work on me as I strive to walk out of the prison of unforgiveness.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. eden melissa
    Apr 06, 2011 @ 12:00:01

    To God Be The Glory, when you let go and Let God this is what happens my beautiful sister!
    So very happy, so very proud of you- continue to seek God and Lean NOT to your own understanding in all your ways acknowledge Him and he shall make your paths straight!

    All smiles 😉 xoxo

    Reply

    • Melanie
      Apr 06, 2011 @ 12:20:23

      Thank you Eden! Your willingness to be completely transparent has inspired me to let God use me throough the continuation of my blog. Will continue to seek Him in everything I do! Love you! 🙂

      Reply

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