Forgiveness - When I’ve wronged someone
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“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift.” Matthew 5:23-24
What is our role when we have wronged someone? What does forgiveness look like then? As mentioned earlier our biggest battle in seeking forgiveness is our pride. But as Christians, we have a responsibility to make things right. To humble ourselves.
When we are the problem, it is important to spend time in prayer first. Bringing our sin before the Lord and acknowledging that we have sinned against him first and foremost. We must also be in prayer for the person we have wronged. Praying for them and for healing from the hurt we have caused. Praying that the Lord would go ahead of us as we contact them to have a conversation if at all possible – face to face!
When we meet up, we acknowledge our wrongdoing without the need to identify their part in it… this is about us acknowledging our behaviour! No excuses, just acknowledgement. We can tell them that we have acknowledged our sin before the Lord and now need to do so before them.
We must express our sorrow for the hurt we have caused. This is not the time to use the modern adage ‘may have’ as in, expressing sorrow for the hurt I may have caused. When we wrong someone, hurt is the real result and if we think we ‘may have’ cause hurt, then we do not have genuine sorrow.
Let them know that we repent of our behaviour (this means changing!) and ASK FOR FORGIVENESS. Never say you are sorry without asking for forgiveness. It means nothing otherwise.
Remember that this is a framework and wisdom needs to be applied. After all, it is one thing to have gossiped behind someone’s back or have blown your top in anger, but it is another thing to have committed adultery or committed another sexual sin or theft etc. You may have wronged a Christian or a non-Christian, but grace and patience must be offered. They may not rush to offer forgiveness at your request. They may need some time, but remember that our Lord is patient with us, so we should be patient with others.
Pray that God may impress upon our hearts anyone that we need to ask for forgiveness from, not demanding, but patiently seeking restoration.
Pray with us today's prayer request:The Gafcon May devotions are by Lorna Ashworth on the subject of 'Forgiveness'. Thank God for this great theme. Pray for Lorna as she keeps up with the daily schedule, and for the reach of the devotions to benefit many around the world.
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