Unforgiveness is a huge problem in marriages. But God’s Word is clear. “Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Col. 3:13. Forgiveness does not make the other person right, it makes you free! Many times we go around mad for days at a time, while our husbands are oblivious to how we feel inside. He is sleeping just fine, while our bitterness eats us up inside. I heard it put like this: Do yourself a favor, forgive! Do it for you as much as for your husband.
Here are 5 tips for forgiveness that can help from Stu Gray and the “Stupendous Marriage” blog:
1. Think of all the things you need to be forgiven for.
I know, that’s a weird one to start with. But guess what? You
are not a perfect human being. If you realize your own faults,
and realize that you also need a savior who forgives you, it helps
begin to give perspective on the forgiveness that needs to be given.
2. Realize that they may not have known the depth with
which they hurt you. While Jesus was hanging on the cross,
he said ‘Father, forgive them, they know not what they do.’
Perhaps your spouse doesn’t even realize how much they hurt you.
3. Go to God and ask for His help. Doing the forgiveness
thing on your own, if you have been hurt repeatedly or deeply,
just isn’t possible. Forgiveness is letting go of the responsibility
and giving it to God. Ask God to come and take the hurt and
pain that has been inflicted upon you. When you give it over to
God, hHe takes the burden. Its not that you won’t have memories
or feelings again…but you give up your right to hold on to them and
get even because of them. When you experience those hurts again
as memories (and you will) you have to again, acknowledge them,
but ask God to keep helping you – and let Him take them. They can’t
stay stuck in your mind, or you will end up in resentment or
4. Don’t deny the hurt that has been caused. Even
though you have given it over to God, it’s not pretending that it
didn’t happen. You have to acknowledge the hurt, and work through it.
Perhaps that will take the help of a pastor or counselor, or support
group of safe people where you can work through your feelings.
5. Make a choice to NOT get even. When you forgive, you give
it to God – and you leave Him with the burden. You choose to
move on and operate in love. Forgiveness is a choice. If you don’t forgive,
you end up swirling in your own sick and poisonous thoughts. If
you don’t choose to live out of forgiveness, you will just get sick –
emotionally, mentally and some times, physically. I’m sure you have
heard it said that ‘not forgiving is like drinking poison and expecting
the other person to die’. When you forgive, you let them AND
YOURSELF, off the hook, and can move forward toward healing.
Hope this helps! God bless, ladies!