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11 Reasons to Forgive
by Tai Ikomi
10/02/2015 / Christian Living
Forgiveness, as difficult as it is, is laced with many benefits. The benefits of forgiveness permeate many areas of our lives. How do you forgive someone who has hurt you so much? One way of being able to do so is to look at the benefits of forgiveness. Here are 10 reasons to forgive.
1. Forgive because God said to forgive. The authority of God's desire overrides your desire/will not to forgive (Mark 11:25).
2. Forgive because you want your sins forgiven. As believers, unless you forgive, God will not forgive your own sins (Matthew 6:15).
3. Forgive to be emotionally free. When you forgive, you feel free from the hurt the offense created. The secret: Disconnection. Once you release the offense the hurt leaves with it.
4. Forgive to be released from suffocating anger. An alternative to the release of anger through destructing actions is forgiveness. Forgiveness gives a relief to anger. Once you forgive, the anger too leaves (Ecclesiastes 7:9).
5. Forgiveness removes feelings of retaliation. The natural tendency of unforgiveness is "to get back at" and punish the offender. In forgiving the urge to get back at your offender is gone and you find yourself being at peace. No wonder Jesus said to pray for our enemies. In praying and forgiving them, the need for retaliation drops. Forgiveness, therefore, rids you of this ungodly tendency (Romans 12:20).
6. In forgiving you are leaving the judgment in God's hands. When you forgive, God will take it from there with the offense and the offender (Romans 12:19). This in a sense is giving the right of way for God o fight for you.
7. Forgiveness is showing mercy to the offender like your heavenly Father. To forgive is to behave like the merciful God (Luke 6:36). Without compassion, there can be no forgiveness. You may ask the Lord to infuse you with His mercy.
8. When you forgive, you are showing the world who your role model is - Jesus Christ who forgave His offenders on the cross (Luke 23:24). Your forgiveness may give hope to someone that their sins too could be forgiven if they see a demonstration of your forgiveness to others. It could also encourage others to forgive their offenders.
After hearing my story of how I forgave the young man who killed my husband and three children while driving intoxicated, many people have decided to forgive their own offenders.
9. Medical science says that unforgiveness could lead to physical setbacks due to jagged emotions. Forgiveness is good for your health. Forgiveness will stop the release of harmful toxins in your body when you are under stress of unforgiveness.
10. Unforgiveness of past offenses and offenders affects your present social interactions. Lack of forgiveness makes you look negative and unfriendly (1 Samuel 22:19).
11. Forgiveness promotes unity in the church. Unforgiveness will create an atmosphere where gossips, innuendos, anger and bitterness would flourish (Ephesians 4:32, Colossians 3:13). Forgiveness creates an atmosphere of love, unity and spiritual growth in the church of God. We can all be part of it.
Dr. Tai Ikomi is an author of over 30 books .and a conference speaker. She gives seminars on the Names of God and forgiveness after forgiving the drunk man who killed her entire family. She is the founder of Forgiveness Discipleship.
Dr. Tai Ikomi
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