Forgiveness is the willingness to give up your resentment toward someone who has wronged you, regardless of how serious or painful that wrong might have been.
Resentment is the feeling of displeasure or indignation at some act, remark, person, etc., regarded as causing injury or insult.
In the reading from Luke 7; One of the Pharisees invited Jesus to have dinner with him, A woman in that town who lived a sinful life learned that Jesus was eating at the Pharisee’s house, so she came there with an alabaster jar of perfume. As she stood behind him at his feet weeping, she began to wet his feet with her tears. Then she wiped them with her hair, kissed them and poured perfume on them.
When the Pharisee who had invited him saw this, he said to himself, “If this man were a prophet, he would know who is touching him and what kind of woman she is—that she is a sinner.”
Jesus asked Simon, in a parable of the money lender…..
Jesus is asking you, Do you see this woman? What we see, and especially how we see, often depends on which pair of interpretive lenses we put on.
The unforgiving heart clings to the past, refusing to extend to others what our heavenly Father has extended to us.
The truth is that people choose to be unforgiving—it is a deliberate decision and a self-inflicted pain.
Signs of lingering unforgiveness.
Malice: A desire to harm others. When you curse the offender, wish him ill or plan how to hurt him, then malice is still lingering.
Bitterness: One of the most significant repercussions is that bitterness takes root in the heart, and then it spreads its poison to choke out every godly trait there. This root of bitterness will keep you from being the person God wants you to be, and prevent you from carrying out His will for your life. When He taught His disciples to pray, Jesus added, “If you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions” (Matthew 6:15). Jesus teaches us that we must forgive “seventy times seven,” which means we must always forgive.
Anger: A strong feeling of hostility and displeasure. People literally hit objects and destroy things around them only to fix it when it is over.
Clamour: Loud abusive language, and loud demands or protests.
Evil speaking or slander: To slander is to say bad things about someone, or to backbite. Those who slander often have the intention of destroying another person.
Why is it so difficult for people to forgive?
Pain and Grief: Sometimes the emotional pain and grief one goes through is almost unbearable, and as human beings it is not easy to forget.
Pride and ego: Do you know who I am? I will show you where power lies…. . When all is said and done you are a human being.
Payback: For some people it becomes like a character trait. They are filled with so much Vendetta. They are very vindictive. Unless they have retaliated they are never satisfied.
Vengence is the Lord’s
The consequences of unforgiveness.
Our prayers will not be answered.
It will affect our prayer life. Likewise, our worship will be affected.
Jesus teaches us that when we are in conflict, we are to stop—even in the middle of our worship—and go to set matters right.
What are we suppose to do as forgivers? (The responsibility of the forgiver)
Recognize we've been totally forgiven.
Once we understand the depth of our sin and the distance it placed between us and God and Realizing God has totally forgiven us of a debt we can never repay helps us learn the importance of forgiving others.
Analyse the problem:
Often the letting go of forgiveness happens only after the truth of a problem has been confronted and put squarely on the table. Confronting someone may not come easy for you, but it may be the most merciful thing you do for someone you care about. Jesus said in Luke 17: "If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him."
Analyse the offender
If you analyse the offender, you will realize that although he is doing evil, he may not be fully aware of the implications of his action.
Analyse your yourself.
You might have done the same thing (or something worse) before. Probably you might have acted the same way if you had been confronted with the same issue.
Analyse God’s plan.
View those we've forgiven as tools in our lives. The Lord uses situations and people to help us grow in our understanding of His grace.
We should do our part to restore fellowship with those who've hurt us. Once forgiveness is complete, reconciliation will be much easier.
Power of forgiveness
Forgiveness makes you a great person. Not only will your prayers be answered but you become more powerful spiritually, physically and emotionally.
Conclusion: Today remember, people will let you down, they will hurt you and disappoint you. Don’t let the actions of others block your relationship with the Father by holding unforgiveness. Instead, choose to forgive so that you can increase your capacity to receive everything He has in store for you.