Friday, January 21, 2011

Forgiveness: It's A Choice

"Bitterness is drinking poison while waiting for the other person to die."

Bitterness gnaws away at my soul. It is an unseen disease, yet it is as putrid as a flesh-eating disease (look up pictures of this - its truly horrific). If I let it, bitterness will insidiously consume me.

This is a bleak future for those who have been hurt. Yet God offers us another option.


It seems impossible. And truthfully and simply, it is.

Forgiveness is completely antithetical to our human nature - we fight, we war against it. It is only through Christ that we can forgive. And Christ is the model for forgiveness. He was the one who taught us to pray, "forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors" (Matthew 6:12). Isaiah tells us that God makes a conscious decision to not remember our sins. We must do the same. Day by day, and some times minute by minute, we must choose forgiveness.

The first step may be to simply admit your bitterness. The word "confession" means to "agree with God" and often we simply need to view our sin through Christ's eyes and call it what it is. Each time hurt wells inside of you (and believe me, it will) purpose to meditate on Scripture. Later, as you are able, begin to pray for those who have hurt you.

Forgiveness is not necessarily letting that person "off the hook". It is not denying the pain that they have caused you. Forgiveness is trusting that God will deal justly with that person. Take your pain and your hurt to God - He is big enough to handle your pain (and goodness knows "stuffing" pain doesn't do any good) and He desires to bring healing to your life "that you have have life and have it abundantly".

I am praying that you (whoever YOU are) will be able to take the first step on the journey of forgiveness. It is a journey toward freedom and toward life.

"We never look more like Christ than when we forgive" (Beth Moore, Praying God's Word)

"To forgive is to set a prisoner free and to discover that the prisoner was you." (Lewis B. Smedes)


  1. I always am so blessed by your posts. They are so full of wisdom.
    Thanks :)

  2. I agree with Steph! I could see you working for some girls' devotional magazine. Wouldn't that be cool if the Murphy RAs and Marlena put one together? I could even be a PDF that you send out in an email to the dorm...

    Anyhow. Please excuse me, I am just the crazy idea lady. Love you, friend!

  3. Lets do it...put a devotional together. Lyndsey could be the editor-in-chief. I think that it would be a meaty...well-done devotional. Lyndsey, you head it up we'll contribute, and I'll help write a book proposal to send to publishers!

    Good words Callie! Not just good, life-giving.

  4. I love this. Having experienced the miracle of forgiveness in my own life, I'm passionate about seeing others forgive and find freedom, too. Thanks for sharing.


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