The Lord has been dealing with my heart about forgiveness. I came across a passage in Ephesians 4. Though the verse 4:32 is one I have taught my daughter and memorized with her, I guess I hadn't put it to work in my own life. I use this verse to teach her that we must be nice to each other whether we want to or not. Even more, is even when they are being mean, we are still instructed by the bible to be kind to each other.
When you read the verses 25 through 32 you have a much bigger task.
"25. Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man truth with his neighbor:
for we are members of another. 26. Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go
down upon your wrath. 27. Neither give place to the devil. 28. Let him that
stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing
which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth. 29. Let no corrupt
communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of
edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers. 30. And grieve not the
hold Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption. 31. Let
all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put
away from you, with all malice. 32. And be ye kind one to another, even as God
for Christ's sake hath forgiven you. "
This passage is actually quite a hard thing to do. It tells us not to lie, not
to sin because we are angry, don't hold grudges. These things are hard not to do
and all of us are guilty of one or more. The part that I need to work on most is
verse 29. I often get frustrated and "vent" to my husband or whoever will
listen. I don't think I should be doing this. This "corrupt communication"
refers to gossip, negative conversations, or complaining. I am guilty of these.
I also think you are guilty if you stand by and listen to another person with
corrupt communication. Often times, you will join in or begin to have the habits
yourself. Beware of what you are listening too. I used to have a very strict
policy of not saying anything I would not say to that person. I have let my
standards down because of the people I am around.
We are not supposed to use our mouths for the corrupt communication but for edifying.
Verse 32 reminds us that we shouldn't be sorrowful of these commandments or towards one another because Christ has forgiven us for much worse sins. What right do we have to be angry at another person when our God has forgiven our EVERY SINGLE SIN?!?
These verses bring a new meaning to me. I have some instances in my life where people have wronged me. There have been time when people made me so angry. To this day, I still feel they were wrong and I was right. But I suppose it doesn't really matter. I need to forgive these people for my own sake and for the discipline of following God's word. It is nearly impossible to just forgive someone out of the blue, especially when you have been upset for some time.
So forgiving those who have wronged me is something I am working on. I have talked through most of these situations with my husband and he is a great listener. (Note-I don't complain, talk negative, etc. I just work on figuring out why I am so mad and why they wronged me.) This is really helping me sort through my feelings.