To hear more about Forgiveness as a Legacy Element, listen to the Build Your Legacy Podcast (see link at bottom of post)
Forgiveness is one of the life-changing elements that impact our legacy. If we do not build our legacy laced with quick and full forgiveness, we will end up “stuck.” And if we are “stuck,” we cannot build our legacy in that area of unforgiveness. Unforgiveness blinds us to what we should be grateful for in that area of life, and it hinders fruitfulness which is critical in building our legacy.
But I say to you that everyone who continues to be angry with his brother or harbors malice against him shall be guilty before the court, and whoever speaks [contemptuously and insultingly] to his brother, ‘Raca (You empty-headed idiot)!’ shall be guilty before the supreme court (Sanhedrin); and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of the fiery hell. So if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and while there, you remember that your brother has something [such as a grievance or legitimate complaint] against you, leave your offering there at the altar and go. First, make peace with your brother, and then come and present your offering.
To have clarity about forgiveness, we need to look at unforgiveness. The definition of unforgiveness includes this concept: Many people who have been hurt feel insignificant and powerless; therefore, they try to get their need for significance met by withholding forgiveness. Unforgiveness gives them a sense of power and superiority. If a friend ever betrayed you for a time, you might have felt powerless to stop the pain. The scripture shows us what we are to do if we have not forgiven. Matthew 5:23-24.
So if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and while there, you remember that your brother has something [such as a grievance or legitimate complaint] against you, leave your offering there at the altar and go. First make peace with your brother, and then come and present your offering.
Saying I forgive you seem difficult at times, yet a forgiving person releases the spirit of gratitude in their life and the life of those seeking or needing forgiveness. But just like gratitude, our forgiveness must be spoked to the one that hurt us. We express our gratitude to God and those that He used to give us the reason to be grateful. We talk with God about our willingness to forgive, and then we express “I forgive you” to the one that hurt me. Silent forgiveness does not give the person an opportunity to accept it, which opens the door to the enemy in both lives.
Forgiveness is one of the elements of change in our life and legacy. Being a forgiving person causes us to grow in our compassion and understanding of our own behavior. When we forgive someone else, we become aware of how easily a thoughtless word or action can bring pain to another.
Lastly, choosing to be a person that forgives quickly and fully enables God to trust you with some of His most precious relationships because He knows that you’re being yielded to His way; opens those great and effectual doors; that no man can close. Selah.
Until next time, remember, we craft our legacy daily, do it as it becometh you. If you would like to listen to the podcast of this Legacy Element of Forgiveness, click here.
The other legacy elements and many other topics are included in the “Legacy Tips” podcast. Because life is crazy and busy, each of them is ten minutes or less.
Remember, that legacy is the life we live, the choices we make, the truths we share, and the love we unconditionally give, knowing no one is perfect, but we can all bear fruit and fruit that will remain.
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