As we start today, I have it on my heart to put out a new podcast today. With the topic of forgiveness being key ringing in my head and heart, I think I just found the topic I will share about in my monthly podcast. Do you realize the symptoms of unforgiveness? Have you considered the negative impact or side effects of unforgiveness? Could today be a day of breakthrough that will open up the door to a freedom you haven’t felt in a long time?
Whenever this topic arises, I share a video on forgiveness. It’s based on a work event, where they asked for a testimony about a life-changing experience.
Dashboard signals or symptoms of unforgiveness:
Without forgiveness there is Bitterness and Resentment:
Bitterness and resentment can be indicators of unforgiveness, serving as warning lights that something is amiss in our hearts.
The Bible warns against harboring bitterness and encourages us to forgive as God has forgiven us (Ephesians 4:31-32, Colossians 3:13).
Without forgiveness there is Broken Relationships:
Strained or broken relationships may signal the presence of unforgiveness in our lives.
Jesus emphasizes reconciliation and resolving conflicts with others (Matthew 5:23-24, Matthew 18:15-17).
Without forgiveness there is Lack of Peace:
Inner turmoil, anxiety, and a lack of peace may result from holding onto grudges.
The Bible encourages us to experience the peace that comes from trusting in God and letting go of resentments (Philippians 4:6-7, Colossians 3:15).
Without forgiveness there is Prayer Hindrance:
Unanswered prayers or a sense of distance in our relationship with God might indicate unresolved unforgiveness.
Jesus emphasizes the importance of forgiveness in our relationship with God and others (Matthew 6:14-15, Mark 11:25).
Without forgiveness there is Judgmental Attitude:
A critical and judgmental spirit may reveal unforgiveness, as we may be holding others to a standard we ourselves cannot meet.
Jesus warns against a judgmental attitude and encourages a humble and forgiving heart (Matthew 7:1-5, Luke 6:37).
Forgiveness – How to address unforgiveness biblically:
Acknowledge and Confess:
Acknowledge the presence of unforgiveness and confess it to God (1 John 1:9).
Pray for a Forgiving Heart:
Seek God’s help in cultivating a forgiving heart through prayer and dependence on His grace (Philippians 4:13).
Meditate on God’s Word:
Immerse yourself in the Bible to understand God’s perspective on forgiveness and mercy (Psalm 119:11).
Take steps toward reconciliation with those you’ve harbored unforgiveness against (Matthew 5:23-24).
Practice extending the same grace and forgiveness to others that God has shown you (Ephesians 4:32).
Remember, forgiveness is not just a human act but aligns with God’s nature, and as followers of Christ, we are called to emulate His forgiveness in our lives.
This year I am using the 365 Daily Devotions book I received for Christmas and applying it towards being dads. It’s called WALKING WITH GOD by DAVID JEREMIAH. It’s exciting to get to learn from a new resource this year as we have tried different options the past two years and will keep working through this one for 2024. For more information about the author and his ministry, visit: DavidJeremiah.org.
Topic: THE RELIEF OF FORGIVENESS
Verse: Matthew 6:12 (NIV)
And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
Firstly, let’s be the dads who go back to Jesus to know how to pray. Secondly, let’s be the dads who in our daily prayer look for any unforgiveness in our lives that we need to release and give over to God. Ultimately, let’s be the dads who model the character of Jesus who paid the ultimate price to help us be forgiven and reconciled back to God. Today, let’s be the dads who are forgiving our debtors trusting that through the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus, our debts are also forgiven.
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Physical Health Issues:
- Side Effect: Unforgiveness has been linked to stress, anxiety, and other physical health problems.
- Biblical View: The Bible acknowledges the mind-body connection and encourages believers to pursue peace and avoid anxiety through trust in God (Philippians 4:6-7, Proverbs 14:30).
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Emotional Distress:
- Side Effect: Holding onto grudges can lead to prolonged emotional distress, including depression and anger.
- Biblical View: The Bible encourages believers to cast their anxieties on God and find comfort in His promises (1 Peter 5:7, Psalm 34:18).
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Strained Relationships:
- Side Effect: Unforgiveness can strain relationships, leading to broken bonds and isolation.
- Biblical View: The Bible emphasizes the importance of reconciliation and forgiveness in relationships (Matthew 5:23-24, Colossians 3:13).
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Spiritual Stagnation:
- Side Effect: Unforgiveness may hinder spiritual growth and intimacy with God.
- Biblical View: The Bible teaches that forgiving others is linked to receiving God’s forgiveness, fostering spiritual growth (Matthew 6:14-15, Mark 11:25).
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Root of Bitterness:
- Side Effect: Unforgiveness can give rise to a root of bitterness, poisoning our hearts and attitudes.
- Biblical View: The Bible warns against the destructive nature of bitterness and urges believers to pursue peace and holiness (Hebrews 12:14-15, Ephesians 4:31-32).
Forgive because unforgiveness produces Prayer Hindrance:
- Side Effect: Unforgiveness may hinder the effectiveness of our prayers.
- Biblical View: Jesus emphasizes the importance of a forgiving heart in our relationship with God and others (Matthew 6:14-15, Mark 11:25).
Aligning with the Word of God:
Today, let’s go beyond holding a grudge and move towards the will of God to forgive. Let’s grab a hold of what the Bible shows us and choose to walk in obedience to the Word of God instead of allowing the ways of this world to keep us from joy and the fullness God desires we live in and with.
- Forgive Others:
- The Bible instructs us to forgive others just as God has forgiven us (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:13).
- Seek Reconciliation:
- Jesus encourages us to seek reconciliation with others before offering our gifts at the altar (Matthew 5:23-24).
- Let Go and Trust God:
- The Bible advises us to cast our burdens on the Lord and trust Him to handle justice (Romans 12:19, Psalm 55:22).
- Pray for Enemies:
- Jesus instructs us to pray for those who persecute us, promoting a spirit of forgiveness (Matthew 5:44).
- Guard Your Heart:
- The Bible advises us to guard our hearts against bitterness and to pursue peace with all people (Proverbs 4:23, Romans 12:18).
There is no such thing as free forgiveness:
Today’s Devotional speaks to forgiveness in relations to financial aspect and how there is no such thing as free forgiveness because “someone has bear the burden of the debt.” In the case of the forgiveness we’ve been talking about today, Jesus picked up the tab by paying the ultimate sacrifice and covering the burden of our debts on the cross. Since He already paid the debt in full, we can choose to live in the life He offers us fully and completely. Even in today’s verse, we see how it is a part of the Lord’s prayer for us to remember daily and stop the unforgiveness and walk in forgiveness and the freedom that comes out of it!
Jesus paid it all!
Today’s Devotional calls out the forgiveness we receive from God through Jesus and today we need to take the step to make sure we aren’t carrying around unforgiveness for others nor allow the things God has already forgiven us about to have power or dominion over our lives today. Let’s be the dads who leave our forgiveness nailed to the cross and stop allowing the devil to condemn us by trying to tie us up in guilt and fear. Let’s be the dads who help our wives, kids, and world to grab a hold of this reality and choose to walk in freedom by both forgiving others and receiving the forgiveness from God!
Today’s Devotional closes with a quote from a hymn to encourage us. The “hymn says, it’s nailed to the cross, and we bear it no more.” So, stop carrying around all the baggage you are meant to leave at or nail to the cross. Today, let’s be the dads who walk in the freedom of forgiveness that we have received and we have given so that we don’t carry around bitterness, anger, frustration, judgmental, and other such destructive attitudes.