When someone’s choices, actions, or behaviors cause circumstances that painfully change your life . . . it can seem like you’ll never feel okay again.
I get it. I’ve been there . . . curled up on the bed for days wondering how I’d ever be able to breathe again. At that moment, the idea of forgiving seems impossible.
Last time, we talked about 5 Reasons to Forgive When It Feels Impossible. And here’s encouragement to help us actually do it . . . 5 Powerful Truths to Help When You Need to Forgive.
But the truth is, you and I can know the reasons we should forgive and make the decision to forgive but the question then becomes . . . how do we heal after we forgive?
Today, I’d like to share with you some truths from God’s Word that have helped me.
5 Truths that will Help You Heal After You Forgive
1. Thank God in Advance for Setting You Free
With the Spirit’s help, aphiémi means you and I can be set free from anger, bitterness, and resentment. Glory!
“To forgive is to set the prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you.” ~Louis B. Smedes
2. Give Yourself Permission to Let Go of What Was Lost . . . Love, Trust, Reputation, Hopes, and Dreams.
An essential part of healing after forgiving is realizing that you can’t undo the past. Maybe, like me, you struggle with “if only and what if” thoughts . . . healing means letting them go. It’s remembering, that we can’t change what has happened but we can change how we allow it to affect the future.
We have God’s promise…
We know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose for them.Romans 8:28
3. Choose to Stop Retelling and Reliving the Pain.
It’s hard to stop dwelling on a pain-filled experience, but healing is almost impossible when you and I continue to replay it in our heads and to our friends.
It can be tempting to want sympathy from friends and family, but once we’ve shared the details of our stories with others, we have no control over where they go or how they grow.
“Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against a fellow Israelite, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the Lord.”Leviticus 19:18
4. Trust God with Every Part of the Future.
God is love. He cares. He is present. And He is able to give us strength and hope, and everything else we need to heal.
For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.Philippians 4:13
5. Pray and Ask God to Help You Live with Joy
You and I may feel like living with joy both denies and excuses what happened. It doesn’t.
Yes, we need to take the time needed to grieve what was lost, but then it’s important that we give ourselves permission to do things we enjoy . . . to heal. So let yourself laugh. Have some fun. It will be good for you.
During my season of healing, I learned to set grief appointments. I’d set aside 30 minutes to cry and cry out. But for the rest of the day, I’d focus on “counting my blessings” and reminding myself that I could wait to deal with the hurt later at my grief appointment.
There is a time to cry and a time to laugh. There is a time to be sad and a time to dance with joy.Ecclesiastes 3:4
A Prayer for Healing After Forgiving the Impossible
Father, sometimes it feels like my heart will never heal. The loss overwhelms me and the pain is so intense. I’ve said the words and forgiven the offender but how do I heal. I do I feel fully alive again.
I’m running to you today pausing to remember my own faults and flaws. I’m reminded of all the times You have forgiven me for the pain I’ve caused myself and others . . . the times I’ve hurt Your heart through my pride and selfishness.
Please help me extend the grace and mercy I have received. Please give me the strength I need to lay aside my hurt and anger. Help me forgive the impossible any time bitterness rises up in me. Please give me Your perfect peace and joy. And by the power of your Spirit, help me love like Jesus. In whose name I pray. Amen.
Friends, I can tell you from personal experience . . . healing is possible.
It’s a process that won’t happen overnight, but I promise that God will heal a heart that is surrendered to Him.
So repeat steps #1–5 often.
God is with you. He will not leave to heal alone. SEEK Him. He will give you everything you need.
Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and He will give you everything you need.Luke 12:31
I love this word of encouragement…
“ Christ is the Good Physician. There is no disease He cannot heal; no sin He cannot remove; no trouble He cannot help. He is the Balm of Gilead, the Great Physician who has never yet failed to heal all the spiritual maladies of every soul that has come unto Him in faith and prayer.” ~ James H. Aughey
May God bless you as you run to Him for healing. May He give You His peace and fill you with joy.
Thank you so much for joining me today.
And a thank you to BibleGateway.com for sources.
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“Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and He will give you everything you need.” Luke 12:31
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