"And if he sins against you seven times in a day, and seven times in a day returns to you, saying, "I repent," you shall forgive him" (Luke 17:4)
Some say that the failure to offer or receive forgiveness lies at the heart of most of the serious emotional and spiritual disorders that we experience. While this may be an unprovable assertion, it is clear that unforgiveness provides fertile soil for a remarkably diverse crop of weeds. It is the source of much that can go sour in personal relationships, and it can hide behind many different masks.
People sometimes say in an angry tone that they have forgiven past offenses, but their obvious bitterness betrays them. Unforgiveness can lodge in your heart and hide from you. The following questions will help you examine your heart to see if you need to forgive someone:
1. Do you still secretly hope that someone will get what he/she deserves?
2. Are you still talking negatively about this person to others?
3. Do you indulge in fantasies of revenge - even mild ones?
4. Do you spend time mulling over what he/she did to you?
5. How do you feel when something good happens to him/her?
6. Have you quit blaming this person for how your life has turned out?
7. Do you find it difficult to be open and trusting with people?
8. Are you frequently angry, depressed, or bitter?
9. Do you find it difficult or impossible to thank God for your offender?
Let God examine your heart. Does He find any unforgiveness there?
Dear Lord, examine my heart. I do not wan to harbor unforgiveness. Expose it so I can deal with it in Your strength. Amen