Forgiveness is a decision. A choice between holding onto pain or letting go of bitterness. A choice between being consumed by anger or being blanketed in grace. It often doesn’t feel this black and white, though. Emotions run high, trauma feels fresh and it can be hard to walk away from certain situations.
Forgiveness is a decision for yourself. It benefits the one doing the forgiving the most. It may alleviate pain and shame for the ones who hurt you, but more importantly, it frees your heart of all-consuming malice and rage. It allows you to heal and draw closer to the Lord.
Forgiveness is a decision about obedience to God. We are commanded to forgive each other just as He forgave us through the sacrifice of His son, Jesus Christ. If the Creator of the Universe can forgive those who betray Him in sin, who are we to hold a grudge? Is the lack of justice we feel when forgiving someone greater than the pain God felt watching Jesus—the perfect, sinless man—hang on the Cross?
Forgiveness is not easy, but it is necessary. Soften your heart, draw near to God and show His love to those who need it most. You’ll be freer for it.