Sunday, March 9, 2014

Forgiveness: God's Way to Freedom

God’s Second Greatest Gift (Part 7)
Ephesians 4:26-32

After weeks on this topic it seems odd to say that we now come to the watershed of forgiveness.  Will we let our pain hang on to our hearts or will we use the miracle of forgiving to heal the hurt we didn't deserve?
·      Forgiveness is a process that involves understanding the mercy God has shown and recognizing how that applies to those who have hurt us.
Forgiveness: God's Way to Freedom    Ephesians 4:32
I. Experience Forgiveness from God
God asks us to repent, not as a condition He needs, but as an action we need.
II. Forgive Yourself
You rewrite your script when you finally do forgive yourself.
You esteem yourself for the good person you are.  You forgive yourself for the bad things you did.
III. Grant Forgiveness
Don’t wait on feelings.  Anger and forgiveness can live together in the same heart.

IV. Go through Stages of Forgiveness

·      We Hurt
·      We Hate
·      We Heal
·      We Come Together
·      We Trust Again

V. Rebuilding Areas of Bitterness

·      Confess its control - be honest about what possesses you.

·      Realize its consequences - Hebrews 12:15

·      Refuse its continuance!
·      Remember The Right Things
Redemptive remembering keeps a clear picture of the past, but it adds a new setting and shifts its focus. 
What had to be remembered was the miracle of survival and renewal. 
If you lose your memory, you lose your own identity.

Learn to reframe the incident with God’s provision and strength when stressful memories occur.

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