Text – Ephesians 4:26- “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath”
Someone once asked me this question, “If you still feel bad whenever you see someone that offended you, does it mean you have not really forgiven the person?”… This is the question I want to address in today’s devotional.
Firstly, we must understand that Forgiveness is a decision of the will, it is not a feeling. Consequently, the act of forgiveness and the feeling of Hurt are two different things.
The devil has confused many people by making them believe that the true sign that they have forgiven their offender is that they would no longer feel bad whenever they see the person. As a result of this belief, whenever they have hurtful feelings about an Offence, the devil accuses them of holding grudges.
Truth is, whenever a person offends you, it is normal to feel hurt, but you must transfer your right of vengeance to God – the act of transferring the right of vengeance to God is what we call “forgiveness”.
After forgiving a person, you may still feel the hurt and pain of the offence, but the true sign of forgiveness is that you do not wish evil for that person or desire to see them punished… The emotional hurt and painful feeling will sometimes show up again, but you must not allow your thoughts to dwell on those feelings,as that will be a fertile ground to breed grudges.
1. HURT Hurt refers to the emotional pain or bad feeling that is caused by the offence. Hurtful feeling is always rekindled by anything that brings back the memory of the offence, including seeing the person who offended you.
That you still feel the hurt/pain doesn't mean you've not forgiven. However, you must trust God to heal your heart from the pain and hurt.
Depending on how severe the offence was, constant reminiscence of the hurt/pain may make it quite difficult to maintain a forgiving spirit, and may make your heart bitter; for this reason, it may be wise for you to avoid anything that makes you remember the pain or brings back the hurtful feeling, while you allow God to work on you till your heart is healed completely. To buttress on this, there are 4 terms we must understand in contrast to forgiveness: Hurt, Doubt, Caution and Restoration. Remember- Forgiveness manes to waive any negative feeling or desire for vengeance or punishment.
1. Lord I forgive everyone that has offended me. I relinquish every right I have to vengeance in Jesus Name.
2. Father, please give me the grace to maintain a forgiving spirit at all times in Jesus Name.
3. Father, you are Jehovah Rapha. Please heal my heart completely from every hurt and pain in Jesus Name.
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