Chapter 7 was probably my favorite chapter. I connected the most with this chapter because it dealt with forgiveness and forgiveness was something I’ve struggled with for years. Whether it was forgiving myself or learning to forgive other people.
Chapter 7: The Choice to Forgive
Big Lie: “Forgiveness is only for those who deserve or earn it.”
Let me start this discussion off by saying the big lie in this chapter is by far, the furthest from the truth. God forgave and forgives us daily when we don’t deserve it or have we earned it. But he forgives because he loves us.
pg. 120 “Justifiable Resentment” is the internal terrorist of forgiveness. Very dangerous because the hurt and pain is very real. But kills from the inside out because it eventually affects other areas of your life. Just because you have the right to feel something, doesn’t mean it’s right to stay in your emotions.
Forgiveness is about sacrificing our right to hold a resentment or grudge against someone else. pg. 124 Un-forgiveness affects our health, LITERALLY! Forgiveness should change the heart and soul. pg. 124-125
pg. 128 Part of forgiveness is accepting that God did not intervene in your behalf even though he could have. But God doesn’t have to protect us from every little thing. Some stuff we need to go through; you never know what God’s plan is.
It’s okay to admit that things in your life will never be the same. It’s called life and maturity in Christ.
Sometimes forgiveness starts with forgiving ourselves first. Before I could forgive my mother, I had to learn to forgive myself. Once we understand what God did to forgive us, only then can we in turn give that same forgiveness and compassion to others.
Forgiveness unhooks you from carrying around the resentment, shame, guilt etc. Forgive and free yourself! Forgiveness is a choice to be free. If God has forgiven you, then you can forgive others. God forgave us when we didn’t deserve it, or earn it.
Forgiveness should be a way of life. Forgive and forgive again, because offense will come!
“Grieve all that you have lost, and you can forgive what you cannot undo— when you do, you will be free,” pg. 137
The other person does not have to be present for you to forgive them. They don’t even have to know they did something to you for you to forgive them. However, sometimes asking for forgiveness can help start healing in not only your life, but the other person’s life.
“Resentment, bitterness and lack of forgiveness anchor us to a past that cannot be changed.” pg. 142 Un-forgiveness is replaying the same event over and over in your mind hoping that the outcomes of past event will change when they WON’T!
1. What are the dangers of a “justifiable resentment”?
2. Describe a time you had to forgive someone and it was difficult to do? What made it difficult and how did you learn to eventually forgive that person?
3. How do we benefit from forgiving others?