This is my attempt to answer someone battling unforgiveness and bitterness in their heart. Its not easy to forgive sometimes. But God is a supernatural God. He is the God of peace and all comfort. God can neutralize our anger and hatred by showing us ourselves. By showing us our own need for forgiveness from a holy God. And experiencing His love can change our heart in a second and heal us of all unforgiveness. God would not demand we forgive if it was too hard for us to do. Here is what I wrote:
I understand. Listen, I would like to talk to you as a friend if I may. What I would recommend is that you really seek God for healing. God doesn't want us to coddle criminals. That isn't God's brand of love. Its interesting because the Greek word for "kindness" (chréstotés) in God's word means, "providing what is really needed." (strong's 5544 and 5543). "What is really needed" could be some sharp criticism. What is really needed may be for us to shake the dust off our feet at them (Matthew 10:14). Or it could be a tender heart as an answer to someone, which God can provide the power to do if we are walking in His Spirit.
“Therefore you are without excuse, whoever you are, when you judge someone else. For on whatever grounds you judge another, you condemn yourself, because you who judge practice the same things.” ~Romans 2:1
“And He also told this parable to some people who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and viewed others with contempt: “Two men went up into the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. “The Pharisee stood and was praying this to himself: ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other people: swindlers, unjust, adulterers, or even like this tax collector. ‘I fast twice a week; I pay tithes of all that I get.’ “But the tax collector, standing some distance away, was even unwilling to lift up his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, the sinner!’ “I tell you, this man went to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but he who humbles himself will be exalted.” — Luke 18:9-14
What happened to you sounds like an incredibly terrible thing for someone to experience. But is it healthy for your life in letting it consume you? We all are hurt by people in this world in one way or another. We could all justify harboring hatred if we really want to. Just look at this world right now. The vicious cycle of hate is never-ending, unless we can help stop it by God's grace. It doesn't mean you ever have to coddle anyone who has hurt you. But maybe put everything on the back burner for the time being, and seek God for healing in our lives. Seek His love, joy and forgiveness for our own shortcomings and ask Him for the power to heal our angry spirit.
And God understands our weaknesses. And how it can be really hard to forgive people. That's why it's so important for us to seek God so He can show us how WE have fallen short and have insulted Him. Think about the insult God endures every day. Yet He doesn't just smite people down right away. He gives them space to repent. Once we realize how short we have fallen, it really does work in us understanding, forgiveness and patience towards others.
God provides the supernatural ability to forgive. Look at Stephen in chapter 7 and 8 in Acts. "Lord" he said, "Lay not this sin to their charge!". And then the apostle Paul (the one responsible for Stephen's death) was saved and turned out to be an incredible servant of God.
A man who was humble and understood the power of God's forgiveness. Look at Jesus's last words on the cross. "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do!" (Luke 23:34)
Judgment is going to be very severe for so many. And God is a righteous judge and the result of His verdict is eternal. If we really understand that. And we really understand how much WE need God's mercy on that day. Then we will do what we can with all our heart to have the best possible outcome for ourselves on judgment day. I speak to you now in weakness and fear and trembling, knowing I am going to stand before the Lord in judgment. And so I am saying what I am saying. God is going to judge the wicked. But He wants ALL to come to repentance before that great and terrible day. (2 Peter 3:8-10)
I pray for you in Yeshua's Name that the Father touch you and heal your heart and give you the power to forgive and that you yourself seek God's forgiveness. Because we cannot compare ourselves to others. We can't compare ourselves to vile sinners. We have a higher standard as professing believers. And that standard is God's Word. And that is the standard we need to judge ourselves by and compare ourselves to because that is the exact standard God is going to use to judge US.
Again, I pray to the Father over your situation. In the worthy name of Yeshua the Messiah, Amen.
Here is another message about forgiving and being forgiven.
You can be saved!
God loves the people in the world so much that He came down to die for us. If God is opening your heart to His message and you feel convicted for your sins which have separated you from a holy God and you feel the need to be forgiven, then say this prayer. This is how I was powerfully converted to the Christ in 1997!
Say, "My Lord and my God, have mercy on me, a sinner. I believe Jesus the Christ died on the cross and shed His precious blood for the forgiveness of all my sins. I believe Jesus raised from the dead and ascended into heaven and is now on the right-hand side of God listening to this prayer. I open up the door of my heart and I invite You in, Lord Jesus. Thank you, God, for saving my soul and I vow to serve you with all my heart which is the first and greatest commandment. Amen."