Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing."
Luke 23:34 NIV
Jesus forgave those who crucified him, even though they had not asked for forgiveness. He continually forgives us for our constant sin when we fail to acknowledge the grief it gives him. He does not wait for us to ask for forgiveness. His mercy is constant.
Forgiveness is often misunderstood as an exchange between two or more people. While apology and forgiveness can be exchanged, many times forgiveness is a choice by one individual, without the offender’s knowledge. Sometimes we let our anger build as we wait for and apology that may never come. Rather than allowing resentment to build, we must choose to forgive, even when the offender does not want forgiveness. The act of forgiveness can be freeing and peace-giving if you allow it to be. In fact, the more difficult it is to forgive, the more freeing the act is. However, In order to truly forgive we must appreciate the extent to which we have been forgiven by Christ. In understanding that we are all equally fallen, we put ourselves in the position to eliminate self-righteousness.
Think About It
Do you only forgive when asked for forgiveness?
Do you harbor bitterness even after you grant forgiveness?
Talk About It
God, allow your spirit to soften my heart towards those who have wronged me. Remind me that I am no more righteous than they. Help me to truly forgive others as you have forgiven me countless times.
More of the Truth
Colossians 3:13 NIV
Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.
John 8:7 NIV
When they kept on questioning him, he straightened up and said to them, “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone at her.”