Romans 12 v14
‘Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them.’
This is a very direct command and extremely clear when it stands alone from the rest of the verse.
We tend to think forgive and forget, and as I have mentioned on previous occasions, forgiveness does not necessarily involve the other person. You can forgive in the stillness of your heart and mind in order to move on. Even when you tell someone that you have forgiven them, if the situation is such, it might be best to continue going your separate ways. Obviously this is in the extreme and the majority of things we need forgiveness for are relatively minor, daily life continuing as normal.
This verse speaks about blessings and clearly we need to be able to forgive before we can bless people. It is not possible to bless whilst full of anger. This really applies to us and the attitude we hold towards our own flaws. If we feel angry, guilty or ashamed it makes us feel unworthy and not fit to be forgiven. Fortunately this is not the case in God’s eyes as we are all worthy of forgiveness despite our sins. The effect of a lack of self-forgiveness is actually devastating, holding us in bondage to the past. We need freedom; we have to let go of the past in order to claim our future.A good premise to work from is to ‘do unto others as you would be done by.’
We are often tempted to curse people who have wronged us, often making it a central part of our thoughts and conversation for a short while, yet here we are told to bless them. I imagine that we don’t have to go around telling people that we bless them- I would think it’s more a state of mind, asking God to bless them so that we can move on. We don’t know what form God’s blessing might take and it might be something that causes our ‘enemies’ to change their attitudes!
One of the best aims in life is to be filled with love, love encompassing blessings. You cannot give pure love to others when you have some form of blockage within. The good thing is that we don’t have to do everything by ourselves, we can pray for help when the demands on us are stronger than we can cope with. Forgiveness is hard and it might take time to be able to do this, likewise adding blessings may seem phenomenal, but this is the recipe to help us towards a fulfilled life. It is not easy to change our thinking and takes understanding and self-discipline, however it is something we should prioritize as we feel genuinely better when we release the negativity within us, and everything that requires forgiveness is shrouded in negativity!
Once we understand this we can change the way we think from ‘forgive and forget’ to ‘forgive and bless.’
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