As a grumpy child, former procrastinators, did you ever hiss to your sibling, “I’m sooorrrry”? Or have you heard or said, “I’m sorry if I offended you”?
Heart issues are probably the heaviest and most interfering of our weights. Therefore, the first weight we’ll lay aside is unforgiveness. We’ll both ask for forgiveness and give it. All of us are wounded and have wounded others. We need Jesus to heal our wounds and our ways.
The Lord will prompt us to tend to present issues and to old wounds we inflicted. We can ask Him to remind us what needs attention. Something might niggle at your memory, some time when you’re aware of offending but never made it right. Or, maybe you don’t know of an offense you’ve committed, but you sense strain between you and someone else. Ask. “Please, tell me, have I done something to wrong you? It will help me to learn.”
How do we ask forgiveness? Asking forgiveness is naming the offense, accepting responsibility, then asking pardon. “I was wrong to disregard your sadness when we spoke. Will you forgive me?”
Sometimes others should be included as well. “Kids, I was wrong when I snapped at Dad. That was unkind and disrespectful. I set a wrong example for you. Will you forgive me?”
Keeping short accounts with family and others by asking right away keeps our path clear on a daily basis. (How many times have I asked my children’s and husband’s forgiveness for wronging them?) Going to the trouble of tending to a neglected wrong we committed in the past will help us grow and show genuine love.
Asking forgiveness is humbling and restorative. It clears the air and reestablishes fellowship. It’s a strong witness for Christ. It removes a weight we ought not carry.
Whose forgiveness will you ask this week?