An Unforgiving Spirit
I had one recently and I’m not proud of it.
I learned that someone hurt me greatly, that could have cost me my job. I even tried to give them the benefit of the doubt and not place blame, but when I learned that it was true, my heart completely harden.
I said that I forgave them, when in fact I didn’t. I wanted to, but for some reason I couldn’t. The reason was me.
Why? Because I wanted that person to hurt as much as I was. I wanted to know why they put a hit out on me to hurt my career. I wanted them to suffer like I was suffering. I wanted them to pay.
In the process, I was paying the price. Whatever they felt was between them and God alone. But the unforgiveness that I held in my heart towards them was between me and God and it threaten my fellowship with me and my blessings.
How did it affect my fellowship and blessings with him?
Matthew 6:14 -15 – For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.
You read it right, if I forgive others, then our Heavenly Father will forgive me; but if I don’t, then he won’t.
Ephesians 4: 31–32 – Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
The Lord has a way of getting our attention when we screw up. Just like the gossip message, he delivered a message via Dr. Charles Stanley about having an Unforgiving Spirit (the actual title was Freedom from Bondage Part 1 from June 30 Podcast) and I took notes while working. It was if God was speaking to me directly and I got teary eyed and had such remorse and I felt bad.
But what really hit me was when he said that I had no right to hold unforgiveness and that when I became a Christian, I gave up that right.
He’s was right, but that day I heard the podcast (July 1) I wasn’t ready to forgive. I needed to get some things off my chest. I was still seeing her with incredible bitterness that overcame me. I was hurting by what she did, but in the process I was destroying my own being and I was indirectly infecting everyone around me with the bitterness I held in my heart.
Why was everyone else infected with my bitterness?
Because I wanted to destroy her reputation. I’m not ashamed to admit that, but it was wrong of me to involve other people in my pain. Once I did what I’m about to admit, I did go to them and explain that I had to let go of my unforgiving spirit and truly forgive her and wipe the slate clean.
The Healing process – The Truth way to forgive and forget
I couldn’t rest, in fact, I had trouble sleeping and at first I thought that I was having acid reflux episodes, because of bad eating, but as my friend told me, no you were stressed. Yeah, I was stressed and I was the cause of it.
My mother always told me that the other person doesn’t hurt when they have hurt me, I’m the one who hurts when I don’t forgive them. I didn’t even think about what that truly meant, until God himself got me straight. His word is our guide for a reason.
Dr. Stanley suggested taking 2 chairs and I sit in one and hypothetically sit the object of my unforgiveness in the other chair. The problem with that is I don’t articulate that well when I speak sometimes, so I would have not gotten out everything that needed to get out. The Lord reminded me that I do articulate very well in writing. So, that Saturday afternoon, I sat by myself (my cat was lurking in the background, so I wasn’t completely alone) and I got out everything I felt. I started out by apologizing for the things that I did to her to cause her to hurt me. Then I explained to her why she hurt me and told her how I felt. Then I explained that I didn’t have the right any longer to hold the debt over her head. Her debt was cleared (just as ours) on the cross by Jesus himself.
Then I completely gave it all to the Lord. All the hurt, the pain, the memory, the fear, the threats, the turmoil, and most of all the unforgiveness and bitterness and everything else to the Lord and I ask for her healing, as well. It’s not healthy for either one of us to hold on to this. And once I did this, the load and the guilt was lifted. I also forgave myself for what I did that got me in trouble in September at work (which was totally my fault) and I forgave my managers for the way they confronted me. I completely felt the guilt and finally felt free.
Now I walk into my office secure in the knowledge that the slate has been clean by God himself and more importantly, man may remember my sins, but God already forgave me of my sins and remembered it no more (Hebrews 8:12)
As of today, I can look at the situation and the girl who hurt me, as well as myself and my managers with no bitterness. It happened and it happened for a reason beyond all of our control. It brought me closer to the Lord, as I have in a while. I had backslidden like crazy and the Lord has a way of getting our attention when we ignore him too much. (I didn’t really ignore him, but I had stop regularly studying the bible, so that probably what did it) not to mention, this taught me that I need to be extremely mindful and careful of others feelings, intentionally and unintentionally.
I was told that I can be sometimes rude (which is common among all of my fellow peers in my office) and when I asked my mom how I would come off, she agreed that I am a tad rude with my responses. I do have a sarcastic trait, but I think as my heart had harden it was no longer the Female Chandler Bing from Friends sarcastic, but the bitter and mean cynical sarcastic. It wasn’t right and it wasn’t fair to them and of course, apologizes from me were in order.
So, what was the point of this post?
To let others know that we Christians also struggle with unforgiveness and bitterness. We’re not exempt from that, but also we have the Holy Spirit to convict us of doing wrong and this was my punishment for grieving him, when I was ignoring and try to get away and justifying my reasons for not forgiving.
I was suffering physically and emotionally, more importantly spiritually, because I wasn’t in fellowship with God. Prayers wasn’t being answered and it was my fault. NO one else.
I’m a grown woman and I’m not afraid to acknowledge my mistakes and this was one that I’m not proud of.
According to 2nd Corinthians 2:5-11, Satan will take advantage and will try to outwit us, when we have that unforgiveness and bitterness in us. We have to rise above that and forgive, so it doesn’t rob us of the life that God intends for us to have.
So, I implore each of you to learn from my mistakes and don’t do what I just lived through. If you have unforgiveness in your lives and hearts, please make it right today.
Jesus paid our sin debt in full on the cross, when he took on the sins (past, present, and future sins) of all of mankind. He paid the penalty and paid our ransom. Thus making a way for us to be reconcile to God the Father.
1 Corinthians 5:21 – He made Him who knew no sin to be sin on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.
So, if you don’t know Christ as your Lord and Savior today, please believe in Jesus Christ and what he did for all of mankind on the cross. His death, burial, and resurrection is his gospel and the good news that we share with the world.
Today is the day of salvation, now is the acceptable hour, because we don’t know the day nor the hour, when we will take his children (believers in Christ aka the Body of Christ) home, so please accept his free gift of salvation before it’s too late. You don’t have to do anything, except believe in him, believe that he died for you and that he is our risen savior. And in that moment, you are forgiving and you will receive the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
May God continue to bless and smile upon you all