Week 8 — Forgiving Others
"Give us today our daily bread, and forgive us the wrong we have done as we forgive those who wrong us." —Mt 6:11-12
"My heavenly Father will treat you in exactly the same way unless each of you forgives his brother from his heart." —Mt 18:35
Jesus: I am patient sometimes for years, but I won't tolerate unforgiveness even for a minute. I am extremely strict about this. Pray to want to forgive. Forgive now.
Debtor: I don't want to forgive too fast. People will take advantage of me. You don't seem to care about that. Just give me time. I'm going to forgive. In fact, I have forgiven—at least in a way.
Forgive the person who has and will take advantage of you.
"If you bring your gift to the altar and there recall that your brother has anything against you, leave your gift at the altar, go first to be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift." —Mt 5:23-24
Jesus: You've heard the expression: "To err is human, to forgive is divine." That's true. Only I can forgive. However, I expect you to forgive and forget right now. I'll give you the divine power to do it. Stop everything until you accept My grace to forgive.
Debtor: I can forgive but not forget.
Forgive the one you can't forget.
"Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Pardon, and you shall be pardoned." —Lk 6:37
Jesus: When you judge others, it's often a symptom of not having forgiven them. It's not your job. I'm the Judge, and I'm waiting till Judgment Day. I hold you for contempt of court.
Debtor: Jesus, I plead guilty. Give me the grace to want to forgive and then to forgive and be forgiven, as I forgive others.
Forgive the one you judge the most.
"You hypocrite! Remove the plank from your own eye first; then you will see clearly to take the speck from your brother's eye." —Mt 7:5
Jesus: I intend to make you a minister of reconciliation, leading others to forgive and be forgiven (2 Cor 5:18). However, you must be freed from spiritual blindness. Don't be blind to your blindness. Take the plank out of your eye.
Debtor: Why do I always have to forgive? What about her, him, and them? It seems that all I do is forgive (Mt 18:21).
Give thanks for the miracle of forgiveness.
"My command to you is: love your enemies, pray for your persecutors. This will prove that you are sons of your heavenly Father, for His sun rises on the bad and the good, he rains on the just and the unjust." —Mt 5:44-45
Jesus: Child, you have bitterness in you. Unforgiveness is the root of bitterness (Heb 12:15). If you don't forgive, you'll be sick and even poison yourself. Unforgiveness is the root cause of over ninety percent of your problems.
Debtor: Jesus, Your word penetrates and divides (Heb 4:12). I confess my sin of unforgiveness. Thank You for rivers of mercy. At this moment, I feel different, unburdened, and free. I can breathe.
Give "and it shall be given to you. Good measure pressed down, shaken together, running over, will they pour into the fold of your garment" (Lk 6:38).
"Father, forgive them; they do not know what they are doing." —Lk 23:34
Jesus: Child, don't think long about forgiving. There's nothing to think about. You must forgive immediately, unconditionally, and completely. No excuses.
Debtor: Jesus, if You hadn't forgiven and died on the cross, I wouldn't listen to You. What can I say? I commit myself to a life and life-style of forgiving.
Give praise to Jesus for what He has done in the last 55 days.
"You can depend on this as worthy of full acceptance: that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners." —1 Tm 1:15
Jesus: Child, when you don't forgive, you're trying to punish the other person. Offer no resistance to injury; turn the other cheek (Mt 5:39). Vengeance is mine (Rm 12:19). I am Lord.
Debtor: Jesus, I expect the miracle of forgiving and forgiveness.
Forgive your enemies.
Excerpts from Scripture are taken from The New American Bible, copyright 1970 by the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Washington, D.C., and are used by permission of the copyright holder. All rights reserved.
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert J. Buschmiller, July 13, 1995.
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of Cincinnati, July 25, 1995.
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