Why can’t I forgive?

There really is only one reason you can’t forgive, when you have been hurt so much worse than you deserved by someone who doesn’t deserve to be forgiven, it’s because you’ve forgotten how bad you really are and how much you’ve already been forgiven…

Who can say, “I have kept my heart pure; I am clean and without sin”? (Proverbs 20:9)

For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. (James 2:10)

For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard. (Romans 3:23)

We all stumble in many ways. Anyone who is never at fault in what they say is perfect, able to keep their whole body in check. (James 3:2)

“Come now, let’s settle this,” says the LORD. “Though your sins are like scarlet, I will make them as white as snow. Though they are red like crimson, I will make them as white as wool. (Isaiah 1:18)

If we claim we have no sin, we are only fooling ourselves and not living in the truth. But if we confess our sins to him, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all wickedness. If we claim we have not sinned, we are calling God a liar and showing that his word has no place in our hearts. (1 John 1:8-10)

“I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more. (Isaiah 43:25)

He lifted me out of the pit of despair, out of the mud and the mire. He set my feet on solid ground and steadied me as I walked along. (Psalms 40:2)

It’s easy to forgive someone else who you know is just as bad as you. But, it’s very difficult to forgive someone else who you think is worse than you…

“Do not judge others, and you will not be judged. For you will be treated as you treat others. The standard you use in judging is the standard by which you will be judged.
“And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye. (Mathew 7:1-5)

When you make a judgement based on your own criteria, you will probably be guilty of this kind of hypocrisy, which is called confirmation bias…

Confirmation bias
Confirmation bias, also called myside bias, is the tendency to search for, interpret, or recall information in a way that confirms one’s beliefs or hypotheses. It is a type of cognitive bias and a systematic error of inductive reasoning. People display this bias when they gather or remember information selectively, or when they interpret it in a biased way. The effect is stronger for emotionally charged issues and for deeply entrenched beliefs. –wikipedia

Please remember who we are…

And Abram said unto Lot, Let there be no strife, I pray you, between me and you, and between my herdsmen and your herdsmen; for we are brethren. (Genesis 13:8)

Don’t just pretend to love others. Really love them. Hate what is wrong. Hold tightly to what is good. Love each other with genuine affection, and take delight in honoring each other. Never be lazy, but work hard and serve the Lord enthusiastically. Rejoice in our confident hope. Be patient in trouble, and keep on praying. When God’s people are in need, be ready to help them. Always be eager to practice hospitality. (Romans 12:9-13)

Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for each other, love one another deeply, from the heart (1 Peter 1:22)

Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins. (1 Peter 4:8)

I pray that you can join the crowd, who wanted to stone the woman taken in the act of adultery, and realize you are also a sinner, and put down your stone and walk away…

Jesus returned to the Mount of Olives, but early the next morning he was back again at the Temple. A crowd soon gathered, and he sat down and taught them. As he was speaking, the teachers of religious law and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in the act of adultery. They put her in front of the crowd.
     “Teacher,” they said to Jesus, “this woman was caught in the act of adultery. The law of Moses says to stone her. What do you say?”
     They were trying to trap him into saying something they could use against him, but Jesus stooped down and wrote in the dust with his finger. They kept demanding an answer, so he stood up again and said, “All right, but let the one who has never sinned throw the first stone!” Then he stooped down again and wrote in the dust.
When the accusers heard this, they slipped away one by one, beginning with the oldest, until only Jesus was left in the middle of the crowd with the woman. Then Jesus stood up again and said to the woman, “Where are your accusers? Didn’t even one of them condemn you?”
     “No, Lord,” she said.
     And Jesus said, “Neither do I. Go and sin no more.” (John 8:1-11)

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