I am working on one of my next books and I wanted you to read the first chapter. I don’t know when it will be released but it will be an E-book and hopefully a soft back. The closer I get to publishing it I will send out several posts to let you know the release date. Until then, enjoy!
Stop Rushing the Process of Forgiveness
When you have been hurt you shouldn’t forgive too quickly. This doesn’t mean that you aren’t going to work through the forgiveness process, it simply means that there is WORK to do before the forgiveness can begin. Sounds unholy? Unkind? Unscriptural? I like the scripture verse which says
“Don’t let the sun go down on your anger…” Eph. 4:26, 27
What happens when we have been hurt, offended, abused, neglected and taken advantage of? We become angry, bitter, incensed, livid, revengeful and every other emotion associated with a hurting heart. Why should we just erase the emotions so quickly and pretend that all is better when it is not? Look at that scripture verse again. See the word sun? This means time. How long are we given to hold onto anger, hurt, unforgiveness? What this scripture is telling us is that eventually there needs to be a limit as to how long you are going to be angry. Does it say that anger is wrong? no. Does it say emotions are wrong? no. Emotions are given to us by God to deal on the outside with how we feel on the inside.
When we have been hurt we run the gamut of emotions as I listed above. Are any emotions wrong? The only ones that are wrong are the ones that permeate into long-term sins such as hate, bitterness, envy, jealousy, etc. . Emotions that continue to ensue in our hearts and minds become demonic strongholds and are never of God. Normal, healthy reactions when we have been hurt must be released. If we rush this process then we are missing a big step in the long-term healing process.
Everyone’s healing process of forgiveness is going to be different because we are all created different. We all have different levels of maturity, experience, strengths, weaknesses, trust issues, relational strengths and weaknesses and an entire litany of spiritual and psychological experiences. Too often we hear that we must Get on with the business of forgiveness… if we don’t then We are sinners and then we can’t be forgiven… God can’t work in our lives … We had better forgive because Christ forgave us. Is this true? Ultimately it will come down to obedience, but let us be as gracious with ourselves as Christ is with us. He is the Gentle Shepherd. He works gently and graciously with each of us. Have you ever seen a picture of a shepherd breaking the legs of a little sheep because he wandered off? Never. The pictures we always see are of the Shepherd with a gentle smile lifting the lost sheep over His shoulders. If He doesn’t beat the sheep why are you beating yourself up? Be kind to yourself. Give yourself some healing time. Allow the Holy Spirit to work in your heart and the other person’s heart who has hurt you.
Dear Lord I have some emotions I need to get out. I am angry, bitter, hurt, confused and sad. Let me have a really good cry now. Let me scream. Let me yell. Let me get out all that darkness inside of my heart. Thank you that you are not mad at me for all the emotions that I am feeling. It feels good to know that you understand and that you gave me emotions so that I can express on the outside what I’m feeling on the inside. Lord, I still need some more time before I can forgive. I know it’s coming, but I also need some time to grieve. Thank you for not judging my hurt and my anger. I am in the process of learning how to forgive and I want you to hold my hand through the process. Love you Lord! amen.