Steps to Forgiveness

Episode #4

The heart of a leader is the most important part of a leader. If your heart is not right, nothing you accomplish through your leadership will bring satisfaction. One thing many people struggle with is forgiveness. When we fail to forgive those who hurt us, bitterness and anger fester within our heart and rob us of joy. Today, I want to talk about the power of forgiveness. As we continue to read Joseph’s story in Genesis 45, we’ll see that he had every reason to remain angry yet he chose to forgive. How was this possible?

What do you do when someone hurts you?

  • Are you quick to forgive?
  • Our natural instinct is to hurt those who hurt us.

Joseph is forgiving.

  • Genesis 45:9-11, 20
  • Joseph’s brothers sold him into slavery. How could he be so forgiving?
  • We are commanded to forgive.
  • Ephesians 4:32 - "Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you."

What is forgiveness? To answer that, let’s talk about what forgiveness is not.

  1. Forgiveness is not forgetting.
  2. Forgiveness does not remove consequences.
  3. Forgiveness is not a feeling.
  4. Forgiveness is not self-motivated.
  5. Forgiveness is not private.

Forgiveness is: “A commitment by the offended to pardon graciously the repentant from moral liability and to be reconciled to that person, although not all consequences are immediately eliminated.”

Forgiveness is given to those who ask for it.

  • God is willing to forgive anyone, but you must ask for it to receive it. (1 John 1:9)
  • Forgiveness brings reconciliation to the relationship.
  • Be willing to forgive when asked.

How can we forgive someone who doesn’t ask for it?

  • Release them from the bitterness and anger. (Hebrews 12:15)
  • Do not hold it against them any longer.
  • Do not wish them harm or think bad of them.
  • Recognize that even though you release them, the relationship may not ever be restored.

Application: Who do you need to release today?

Book: “Unpacking Forgiveness” by Chris Brauns

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