Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Devotion 365 - Forgive

Maybe someone has wronged you, and you find that you are having a hard time letting bygones be bygones. Remember, forgiveness is never easy, but is always necessary. Our God is a God of forgiveness (see Daniel 9:9), and He expects His people to be forgivers too (see Matthew 6:14—15). Forgiveness does not mean we are denying that we were wronged, or that we are excusing the wrong that was committed. But forgiveness is the way God wants us to deal with being wronged. Forgiveness does not mean that all the consequences go away from the wrong that was committed, either. To forgive basically means that a person is pardoned with no strings attached. 
What is our motivation to forgive others? We forgive for love's sake. Love demands that we forgive others as "[love] keeps no record of being wronged" (1 Corinthians 13:5 NLT). The love of God toward us is a demonstration of forgiveness and serves as a model of forgiveness for us to follow, "forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you" (Ephesians 4:32). Love also continues to forgive, which means there is no limit to the number of times we are to forgive someone (see Matthew 18:21—22). 
Forgiveness is a choice that we make to love someone as God has loved us. Forgiveness believes, "I am forgiven, so I should be forgiving." When we have been wronged, being unforgiving is easy. But for love's sake, we must let go of that wrong and choose to embrace forgiveness. To forgive someone is never easy, but is necessary (see Mark 11:26).

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