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  • Writer's pictureKandi Swift

Let it Go

Ephesians 4:31-32 / ESV

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.

Forgiveness can be hard sometimes. It's those closest to us that can hurt us the most and be the hardest to forgive. I think it's because we place the expectation on them that because they know and love us, certainly they could never do anything to hurt us. And then they do. I'm sure most of the time it's not on purpose, but it doesn't keep it from hurting nonetheless. And then the forgiveness part .... as Christians, we are required to forgive. Peter asked Jesus if forgiving seven times was enough for a brother who offends us over and over, and Jesus replied seventy times seven. Yikes. I'm sure Peter thought he was being generous when he offered up that number.

Jesus continues with a parable to help Peter understand the forgiveness of the Father and the magnitude in which we have been forgiven. To quickly sum it up, there was a servant who owed the king millions, some say even billions, of dollars and the king came to collect. The servant couldn't pay and was in jeopardy of being sold, along with his entire family, in order to settle the debt. The servant fell to the ground and begged for the king's mercy, promising to pay him everything he owed. The king was moved with compassion, released him and forgave the entire debt. You would think the servant would be overcome with such gratitude, but what he did next exposed the level of ungratefulness seated so deeply in his heart. He went out and found a fellow servant who owed him far less, a fraction of what he himself had owed the king, took him by the throat and demanded he pay in full. When the fellow servant could not meet the demand and begged for mercy in the same way he had, instead of forgiving him, he threw him in prison until the debt could be repaid. Jesus goes on to say, "So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses." (Matthew 18:35)

This parable is a comparison of God's forgiveness extended toward us. When we choose in our hearts not to forgive others, it is a reflection of how little God's forgiveness means to us. It reveals our lack of appreciation for the price He paid so that we could be free from the debt of sin. This isn't to say we won't ever struggle. We are human and we will struggle. It's when we have no intention of forgiving and make a conscious choice in our heart not to forgive others that ties the hand of God from forgiving us.

As I was meditating on the scriptures regarding forgiveness, I got this picture of a tug-of-war game in progress. One side represented unforgiveness, the other side represented you and me, and the rope between us represented an offense or a wrongdoing that had been done to us. Both teams were pulling and tugging with all of their might, trying to win. All of a sudden, our team completely let go of the rope and Team Unforgiveness tumbled to the ground. Typically, this is when we would have been considered the losers. However, what I saw instead was that you and I remained standing. When we let go of the offense/wrongdoing, unforgiveness fell and no longer held us in a deadlock. Everything attached to the offense was released from our hands, leaving us free from the pull of unforgiveness.

I know forgiving isn't always as easy as letting go of a rope, but it starts with a heart that is willing and surrendered to God. If you are struggling, I encourage you to spend time in God's presence, for it is there we find the strength to overcome. Ask Him to help you let go of the offense that has tied you to unforgiveness. You will discover a greater love for others and receive a greater understanding of God's love for you.


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Father, in Jesus Name, I pray for my friends who may be struggling with unforgiveness. You admonish us to forgive one another, even if we've forgiven numerous times before. Help us to have a greater appreciation of the sacrifice You made for our salvation, learn to quickly let go of things that offend us, and extend forgiveness to others as you have freely given to us.



Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

Mark 11:25 / ESV And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.


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