Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.Ephesians 4:31-32 ESV
If we are going to get to the finish line with our marriage is intact, we need to choose forgiveness. Over and over again, we need to choose forgiveness. In the big hurts and in the little hurts, we need to keep making the choice to forgive. Forgiving others, especially for sins that cause the deepest hurts, begins with humbly looking at the cross and remembering what God did for us. Humility is where mercy for others begins. Forgiveness is rooted in mercy for others, but it’s planted in humble recognition of all that God has given to us.
We forgive because we are forgiven. We have been saved from the punishment for our sins. But our saving faith is not merely believing that we are forgiven, it’s more than that. It looks at sin through God’s eyes, sees how horrible it is, then looks to the holiness of our Lord and understands how unspeakably glorious His forgiveness truly is. We are not simply off the hook with the cross; our saving faith means we savor the truth that a forgiving God is the most precious reality in all of the universe. When we dwell on this truth, we begin to understand the gift He has given to us. It is from that understanding that we can forgive others.
When we see our sin the way He sees it and know that He has freed us from all payment, the offenses of our spouses should shrink in comparison. The problem is that our pride so often gets in the way of our ability to recognize this—we look at others and think their sin is worse, their wrong is worse than anything we would ever do, and we keep the focus off of our need for forgiveness. We need to humble ourselves and allow God to reveal our sin to us. The reality is that no one in my life can come close to the way I have offended my King, yet He still loves me beyond measure. When I meditate on that truth for any length of time, how could I possibly hold a grudge against anyone else?
Make the choice to release your spouse from their wrongs. Let go of the grudges. They are a broken sinful person just as you are, in need of grace and forgiveness. Humble the prideful attitude that you somehow have a right to hold them to a higher standard than God holds for you. You have been forgiven by the God of creation for every wrong you’ve ever committed—both seen and unseen. Your spouse deserves the same.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗