Forgiveness is tough. It’s a nasty thing, this business of harboring unforgiveness. Bitterness eats at our soul and cuts into our joy. We must give our kids the tools both to forgive and to receive forgiveness.
Five steps toward forgiveness:
- Recognize the problem. Sometimes we hold unforgiveness and don’t know it. That happened to me until a brave child of God pointed it out and I was able to take appropriate action.
- Pray to see the whole picture. How were our actions perceived?. What pain drove her behavior?
- Replace negative thoughts with positives. At first, the well of positives isn’t deep—not much to draw from. God will help you see the positives.
- Can you forgive the other person face to face? If she hasn’t asked for forgiveness, handle carefully with God’s guidance.
- Pray. Pray. Pray. Praise God as you feel your heart soften and give God the praise for positive moments—they will increase exponentially.
Forgiveness is not easy.
Five steps to forgiveness—it seems easy—but it’s not unless you turn the whole mess over to God. A prayer might go like this: God, I can’t do this alone. She hurt me badly. Only you can heal this pain and help me love her again. So, you know what? I am giving it to you. Tell me what you want me to do—each step of the way. And I will give you the glory. Amen.
Two blessings from this approach:
- Unforgiveness in our kids can result in serious rebellion. You will be equipped if they need you to teach them forgiveness.
- Perhaps both people hurt by unforgiveness must, at times, be together socially. Those times can be joyful if the hurt is put aside.