“To err is human, to forgive is Divine”I’m not sure who first made the quote 😅
I know I have committed an almost unpardonable offence, by beginning this with what some would consider a cliché. But I’m hoping that when you’re done reading this, you’ll have all the reasons you need to forgive me.
However cliche the quote may be though, it does have some truth in it. Complete forgiveness is truly difficult to execute, and requires divine strength to gift. So it’s understandable, and OK if we decide we can’t forgive someone of an offence, right? Well, yes… Unless you’re a Christian with the Holy Spirit living in you.
“Be kind and helpful to one another, tender-hearted [compassionate, understanding], forgiving one another [readily and freely], just as God in Christ also forgave you.”Ephesians 4:32
Paul, writing to the Ephesian church, did not just ask them to forgive, he showed them the kind of forgiveness to emulate. When God forgives a man, He has no more record of his sin (Jeremiah 31:34), and in His thoughts, He has dissociated that man from his sin in the most permanent of ways (Psalms 103:12).
That’s our standard. Forgive and forget, in simple terms. It what God expects of us. It is thus what we should expect of ourselves. This can be very complicated for humans, as our minds have developed over time, to store harmful and painful memories in our minds, and use that information to avoid future pain.
So while we may not be able to forgive and completely forget immediately, we can try to let go of those who may have wronged us, and decide to think of these people with Love, and relate with these people with Love (and the wisdom of the Holy Spirit).
Whenever I find it difficult to forgive someone who has wronged me, I remind myself of how God forgave, and continues to forgive me of all of my foolishness. I remind myself of how He does not give up on me, even though I must have surely wronged Him more than 70 x 70 times.
We should hold up God’s standard of forgiveness before our hearts, and apply it to all our relationships. It may seem impossible at times, but there’s nothing impossible with God. And God lives in you!
So be like God. Forgive (and try [by the help of the Holy Spirit, and with the passage of time] to forget😁).