A Christian’s heavenly journey with his feet on the ground. Treasures shared that are discovered along the way.
Please note that this blog has now moved to: "Senior Eagle walking with Father"

Friday, November 09, 2007

Forgiving Those Who Hurt Us

There are times when I find it hard to forgive, especially when I consider I'm in the right and they should be the ones to apologise.

I remember an occasion when I was an engineer. I had been up all night in the cold and wet, supervising construction work and I was very tired and hungry. We were about to pack up, when the young design engineer arrived, after a good night's sleep and breakfast. He started to find fault in some of the unimportant touches and said it wouldn't do. I believed he was totally out of order and for me it was the last straw. I lost my temper and told him in no uncertain manner, that he didn't know what he was talking about and he should get back to his drawing board where he belonged.

I felt bad about my behaviour and later that day I called in and apologised, not so much for what I had said, but for my attitude. It took some courage to do that, so I paused, thinking he might reciprocate. Instead he replied "Quite right, so you should apologise!" I left it at that, but I believed the atmosphere between us and in the office, improved afterwards.

I came to realise that any unforgiveness I may carry within my heart needs to be dealt with, even against people who are dead. I asked God to show me who they were and I made a list, starting as far back as I could remember. I made sure I had really forgiven all those who came to mind.

Several names awakened strong feelings within me and I had to look at the situations in depth with Jesus. One was my high school headmaster, who treated me very badly before I left. His cold aggressive attitude may have affected the direction of my career. The most difficult was my mother, who, although she did her very best for me, tended to be possessive and controlling and I was surprised at the feelings of anger that surfaced. Over a period of over a year, I had to keep forgiving her in my heart. I knew when it was dealt with it was dealt with, because my love for her had increased and my attitude had changed.

Failure to forgive can hamper our walk with God, taint relationships and have a negative disabling affect within our work, church or family community. When we exercise our power to forgive, we all benefit and people and situations are released to go forward God's way.

"If you forgive others the wrongs they have done to you, your Father in heaven will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive the wrongs you have done." Matthew 6:14-15 Good News Bible