14 For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you,
15 but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. - Matthew 6:14-15
Jesus not only knew we would need multiple reminders to forgive in scripture because it's what will bring our hearts peace, He also knew our forgiveness of others would have a huge impact on the kingdom. Remember, God's number one priority is that all people would come to know Jesus as their Savior - that should be our number one priority as well. As a professed follower of Christ, you have to know people are watching you. People witness our forgiveness and our work at living in peace over conflict with others in our lives, and it impacts them. What a beautiful testimony to the Spirit at work in our lives!
God knows my greatest desire is to see the people in my life come to trust Him as their Savior, but that desire battles with my flesh at times. We live in a world of justified complainers. Take a step back for a moment and listen to how this world complains about being offended. It can be so easy to get caught in that trap of negativity. Don't just think forgiveness is about the big stuff - it is, but it's also about the day-to-day little stuff. We are constantly offended - by customer service, by waitresses, co-workers, people in traffic, nurses, doctors..the list goes on and on.
When I complain about the way someone offended me, it impacts my loved ones - especially those younger or the unbelievers in my life. But when I demonstrate a loving, forgiving attitude despite the offense, when I model a Christ-like response, I am working for the Kingdom - and that is truly my greatest desire. Think about those loved ones you desperately want to know Jesus, then think about how much you complain about other people to them. Drawing them into a relationship with Christ isn't just about how you love them, it's about how you love all people in front of them.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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