Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others. Colossians 3:13 NLT
As he sat in his favorite chair, a flood of emotions washed over him.
Jason was an experienced teacher and had received many stern correspondences from parents over the years. But he’d never received any like the email that just popped up on his phone as he enjoyed an evening at home with his wife. The email was accusatory and mean spirited.
The parent questioned Jason’s method of teaching. The student had made A’s and B’s last year—the year Jason had taken off from teaching—but was making C’s this year. Didn’t Jason know how to teach? If their demands weren’t met, they’d contact the headmaster.
Vengeful thoughts taunted Jason. He’d taught this child before with no negative interaction from his parents. He wondered where such an email originated from. Were the parents having a bad day? Had someone else—maybe the student or one of his friends—sent the email? Jason wanted to fire off a mean-spirited email in return, but experience had taught him better.
For the next thirty minutes, Jason ruminated over what to say. He determined he wouldn’t apologize because he wasn’t guilty. He knew he was a good teacher and had followed the special accommodations for this student. The email he finally penned was kind, but to the point.
Later the next day, as Jason poured over his sermon for Sunday—the one on forgiveness—God pierced His heart. God had forgiven him; he must forgive the angry parents.
Forgiveness releases someone from the penalty they should owe for an infraction they’ve committed against us. It is letting go and letting God handle the matter. The person may never recognize their wrong—or even care that they have wronged us—but we must do the right thing whether they do or not.
Unforgiveness binds us to the person who has wronged us while forgiveness frees us. We no longer let them live in our head rent free. We don’t approve of what they’ve done, but we don’t ruminate on it like a cow chewing the cud repeatedly all day.
Forgiveness doesn’t necessarily mean we have to become best friends with the person. The relationship may never be reconciled, but peace with God results because we’ve done the right thing: forgiven as we have been forgiven.
Let God teach you to release those who wrong you.
Tweetable: Who do you need to forgive, but haven't?
Prayer: Father, teach us to forgive others as You have forgiven us.
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