The pain of betrayal is something that most people have experienced to some degree, but when the betrayal or violation of trust comes from someone that is very close to you, God’s command to forgive can almost seem impossible.
It is impossible to do with one’s own ability, but with the grace of God, all things become possible.
I was married once before to a man that was unfaithful. A man that, for many years, yielded to various forms of sexual perversion, and who ultimately committed lewd acts with innocent children. I couldn’t accurately convey to anyone the depth of pain that I experienced, not just throughout the marriage, but also at its end when I was discarded and left with a shattered and broken life.
I remember the day that I sat in a church service during a women’s conference – the theme of the whole conference was GRACE – and we were about to receive communion. I had such anger, bitterness, and borderline hatred in my heart, yet I knew I couldn’t live with that poison inside of me without it affecting my relationship with God. I couldn’t bring myself to take communion; to drink of the “blood” that put me in remembrance of how Christ forgave me, knowing that I could not forgive another. So I sat in the chair and I wept. I wept from a place inside of me that I didn’t know existed until that day.
Then the pastor began to shout, “Who are you, O great mountain? Before Zerubbabel you shall become a plain. And he shall bring forward the top stone amid shouts of ‘Grace, grace to it!” That great mountain that loomed before me suddenly became a plain in the light of God’s grace, and through the tears I said, “God I choose to forgive, I am asking you for the grace to walk this out every day.” With that, I received communion with a free heart, and by faith I received the grace of God to move forward in each day, living and walking out that forgiveness.
My feelings didn’t change overnight. I had to continuously live by what I believed, and not by what I felt. Over time, a moment that could have derailed my life and kept me in bondage to past hurt and offense became one of the most treasured moments of my walk with God. He met me in my weakness, and He made me strong. He will do the same for you when you release offense, and receive His love, and choose to forgive. He will empower you to do the impossible.
Do you have a testimony about forgiveness to share? There is nothing more powerful than a person’s first-hand, eye witness account of what God has done in his or her life.
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