cherishing your vows {forgiveness}

before we get started, let me tell you how totally excited i am for this new venture.  God has sure been working on my heart with this, and i've adored every single step of this journey.  i hope you enjoy this series as much as i've loved writing it.

this week is a hard subject for me, forgiveness.  as i've said before, this girls heart can hold a grudge like no other.  forgiveness just isn't something that comes easily or naturally to me.  over the years i've learned that forgiveness is an absolute key part to a successful relationship.

the day that my husband decided to walk out the door and leave our family, i was angry.  i was so beyond angry.  i was hurt, plain and simple.  it wasn't like a little sting, it was a pain that goes to your bones.  it felt like my heart had been torn out of my body and my tenderness was brutalized.  i was broken and damaged to the center of my very being.

i had two choices...i could ignore my anger and let it fester in my heart or i could forgive him and work towards a resolution.  thankfully, and with God's help, i chose the second one.  it would have been so easy to just cling on to that anger daily.  but that would have hardened my heart and to be completely honest, would have ended in divorce.

And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you
Ephesians 4:32

forgiving love is a love that is securely rooted in God's love for us.  God wants our love to be sweet, soft-hearted and lovely.  and He wants it overflowing with forgiveness.  by offering forgiveness, we are offering the grace that God has given us.  the giving of grace and forgiving love will change the entire tone of your marriage.

give up that anger, regardless of what the injustice was that was done to you. pitch that anger right out the window. and those thoughts of revenge? not in this marriage. they need disposed of as well. with all that gone, God will start to work in both your hearts.  forgiving love heals hurts and helps spouses feel accepted and connected again.  it's so comforting to know if you mess up (as we all do) that you won't be condemned for it daily.

As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.
Psalm 103:12

forgiving love also means wiping that slate clean.  this one was a challenge for me, a big challenge   i was one of those wives that would take his offense, write it down and tuck it in my back pocket to pull out in the future.  you never know when you're going to need it, right?  forgiving means no longer clinging to those offenses.  learning how to do this will not only set him free, but it will set you free as well.  there was nothing as freeing as calling my husband and saying "from today on, your slate is wiped clean, your wrongs are all we start anew".  notice i said HIS slate was wiped clean, i wasn't asking him to do the same for me.  he had to feel that in his heart and do it in his own time.  and guess what, by me going first and setting an example he quickly followed suit.  

Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
Colossians 3:13

this weeks challenge:  choose forgiving love with your whole heart.  place your hurt, anger and brokenness in His hands.  spend lots of time on your knees in prayer, pouring your heart out to Him.  and once you're done, leave it there with Him.  then let His loving beauty pour in.

out for now

ps...don't forget to stop back next saturday for our second session, serving...