How does forgiveness influence our ability to be used by God?
Welcome to “The Global Story,” a weekly glimpse into how God is at work through the global Body of Christ.
A disciple has a right relationship with God through Jesus Christ. And in our Global Disciples training, developing a right relationship with God, and with others. It’s one of our essential themes.
At a recent training in Sri Lanka, God used this session to expose one of the greatest obstacles to good healthy relationships: A lack of forgiveness. When we don’t forgive others, or ask forgiveness for our own wrongdoing, it hinders our intimacy with God. He has forgiven us for everything—and He wants us to do the same with others.
As the Sri Lankan participants shared their experiences, one man said, “God showed me who I need to forgive including my parents and my sister. And I remembered my former church too—I need to ask them forgive me. God shed his blood for me and He forgave me, so I need to forgive them as well.”
Another carried deep wounds from the past. But he said, “I see how God forgave others, and that I need to forgive. I see that when I forgive others, God will take care of it, and reveal everything. My hurt and my pain is in a store room and it sometimes comes out. I decided I need to clean out this storeroom, and when I go home I will ask forgiveness.”
One man mentioned a specific incident he needed to resolve. He said, “A person came to attack my father. I just wanted to kill that person. Now I need to talk with him, and go and ask him for forgiveness.”
The need to forgive, and to be forgiven is a problem we all share. It doesn’t just belong to these brothers in Sri Lanka where 26 years of civil war ravaged the country—pitting north against the south and neighbor against neighbor.
We all need to forgive. And when we forgive—and seek forgiveness—our relationship with God and others is renewed and refreshed, we are free to be used by Jesus to reach more people with the Good News.