Why You Should Always Choose Forgiveness
By Rick Warren
“If you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive the wrongs you have done” (Matthew 6:15 GNT).
If you are unwilling to forgive someone and you don’t want God to forgive them either, that reveals bitterness and resentment in your life.
If you want someone else to be punished but you expect forgiveness for the bad things you’ve done, you’ll just make yourself miserable. You’re not hurting them; you’re only hurting yourself.
Jesus said, “If you do not forgive others, then your Father will not forgive the wrongs you have done” (Matthew 6:15 GNT).
Forgiveness involves your past, present, and future:
- God has forgiven you multiple times in the past
- Lack of forgiveness will make you miserable today
- You will need God’s forgiveness in the future
Consider Jonah. After he warned the people of Nineveh about God’s judgment, they repented and so God forgave them and didn’t punish them. This disappointed Jonah and made him bitter.
But remember how Jonah originally turned away from God? He wanted God’s forgiveness for his own sin of disobeying. Yet he didn’t want God to forgive the Ninevites.
So Jonah prayed, “I knew that you are a loving and merciful God, always patient, always kind, and always ready to change your mind and not punish. Now then, Lord, let me die. I am better off dead than alive” (Jonah 4:2-3 GNT).
Jonah’s resentment was only hurting himself. Here were the Ninevites enjoying the grace of God while Jonah was wallowing in self-pity.
It’s critical that you forgive anyone from your past who has hurt you. And that you forgive anyone who wrongs you today because God has forgiven you for your past sins, and he has promised to forgive you in the future.
For more Daily Hope with Rick Warren, please visit pastorrick.com!
Fill Your Home with Joy and Hope this Christmas!
With Christmas right around the corner, we want to help you spend the holidays worshipping instead of worrying. Slowing down and reconnecting with God. And expressing gratitude for the true meaning of the season.
That’s why Pastor Rick and his wife Kay created the Daily Hope Advent devotional booklet with a companion calendar. This 2-part resource is the perfect way to prepare your heart for the real celebration.
Praise God for the gift of Jesus and build joyful anticipation as Christmas draws near with the 24-day devotional booklet, featuring a special family activity each Sunday. And enjoy the beautiful, custom artwork of the Advent calendar, with a special door for every day of December that opens to reveal a hidden image and encouraging Bible verse.
We’ll send you the Advent devotional booklet and calendar as thanks for your gift below to help share the gift of Jesus with more people through Daily Hope. Be sure to request yours today so that you can start using it on December 1!
*The USA IRS code permits you to deduct the amount of your financial gift to Daily Hope that exceeds the fair market value of materials you received from Daily Hope.
This devotional © 2018 by Rick Warren. All rights reserved. Used by permission.
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