At some point, we’ve all had to forgive someone. An insult hits replays over and over in your mind. Perhaps someone has inflicted a deeper wound on you through abuse, abandonment, or assault. The ache of these injuries can go on for a lifetime. The act of actually forgiving someone can be one of the most difficult things to do in your life. Yet, it’s through forgiveness that God heals our deepest wounds, and frees us from our anger, hate, self-pity, and self-contempt.
But, what does forgiveness really look like?
Deb and Steven Koster, co-editors of Family Fire, address that question in a free new ebook, The Power of Forgiveness: A Guide to Healing. “The truth is we’ve all been hurt by someone,” says Deb, who is also the principal contributing author. “The good news is there’s healing in forgiveness.” Designed to help readers navigate the sometimes messy process to forgive, the ebook begins with a scriptural exploration of forgiveness. It then walks the reader through some critical topics. Why must we forgive? What is, and what is not, forgiveness? How do you forgive someone? And what does forgiveness look like in action?
Forgiveness is at the heart of our Christian faith. Jesus died on the cross for the forgiveness of sins (Luke 24:46-47, Matthew 26:28), freeing us to be in direct relationship with God. For our part, God commands us to forgive those who sin against us: “As the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive” (Colossians 3:13c ESV).
“When we forgive,” explains Deb, “we’re trading the weight of resentment for the joy and peace of restoration. Forgiveness frees us from the bondage of anger and invites us into a life guided by the work of the Holy Spirit. When this happens, the fruits of the Spirit are free to flourish in our lives.”
The ebook unpacks the process of forgiveness. It’s about confronting the pain of a past wound, and calling it what is. Forgiveness is not pretending something didn’t happen or just making it okay. It’s surrendering the right to retribution. The Power of Forgiveness takes the reader step-by-step through the process of forgiveness, and gives some guidelines to relating with an offender afterward.
“Many skills can improve our relationships,” adds Steven, “from thankfulness to communication to managing conflict. All of these are good, but forgiveness is the most essential relationship skill; it’s a foundation for all the others.”
Deb, Steven, and the team at Family Fire pray the ebook will bless people and that through forgiveness they will experience transformation and restoration in their relationships. You can get The Power of Forgiveness free when you subscribe to Family Fire email updates.