Forgiveness - Week 9 Menu
And so we pray, “Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us.”
Please do read Corrie ten Boom on Forgiveness at https://www.guideposts.org/better-living/positive-living/guideposts-classics-corrie-ten-boom-on-forgiveness Her story will not fail to move you, and she shows how forgiveness is possible. If you want to borrow The Road to Forgiveness, please ask.
Read Colossians 3:12-14 and Luke 23:32-35
In a group situation you may not be appropriate to share your answers but please reflect on the questions privately.
1. How easy do you find it to say sorry to others? To turn away from whatever you are doing that you know is wrong? To put things right? What could help you along this path?
2. Would you find it hardest to forgive those who hurt you, or someone you love, in a major way once, or those who keep on hurting you on a daily basis?
3. How do you react when you have been hurt by another? Do you make excuses for them? Do you confront them? Do you forgive and move on? Do you walk away/shut them out of your life? Do you retaliate? Other? What are the pros and cons of each action?
4. Is it possible to forgive someone who has never asked for forgiveness? Is it possible to forgive someone who has never shown remorse or changed their ways?
5. What do you think happens to us, physically, mentally or spiritually, if we don’t forgive someone?
Ask God to examine you and help you to be honest about those you have not forgiven. Spend time reflecting on why you have found it so hard to forgive them. Consider how Christ has forgiven you, how he forgave those who nailed him to the cross. Think of that person and how they are loved by God.
Say, aloud, Father I forgive............ for .......................... Amen
You may need to do this daily until you find, one day, that you no longer hold un-forgiveness for them in your heart.
Also consider if you have not forgiven yourself for something and, if not, why? What does this say about your relationship with God?
However, if someone is hurting you on a daily basis you do need to prayerfully consider whether you need to make changes to your life, or to challenge the person who is hurting you. Regular abuse is not honouring to God, and is harmful mentally, physically and spiritually both to you, the abuser, and others (such as your children or other employees).
Prayer (written by William Barclay)
Forgive us, O Lord, for everything that has spoiled our home life: for the moodiness and irritability which made us difficult to live with; for the insensitiveness which made us careless of the feeling sof others; for selfishness which made life harder for others.
Forgive us, O Lord, for everything that has spoiled our witness for thee; that so often men would never have known that we had been with Jesus and pledged ourselves to him: that we have so often denied with our lives that which we said with our lips; for the difference between our creed and our conduct, our profession and our practice; for any example which made it easier for men to criticize thy Church or for another to sin.
When we think of ourselves and of the meanness and ugliness and weakness of our lives, we thank thee for Jesus Christ our Saviour. Grant unto us a true penitence for our sins. Grant that at the foot of the Cross, we may find our burdens rolled away. And so strengthen us by thy Spirit that in the days to come, we may live more nearly s we ought. Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen