Digging Deeper into Lesson 15
Freedom Through Forgiving: Head to Heart Guide
A barren tree and a stump—an image of the forgiveness process.
1) By an act of your will choose to cut the tree down. The enemy will oppose this. Do it anyway.
2) With each return of old feelings, cut through the trunk. The enemy will accuse you of having failed at forgiving—he works both sides of the street! Keep on doing it anyway.
4) The stump that trips you up later is the question that “stumps” us: Why did God allow it? Release Him also. Trust His love and wisdom—even when you can’t understand it. Believe His promises of restoration.
Who to forgive? We need to spread it around evenly wherever it is needed.
1) Others: most frequently. A prayer that rarely gets answered: “God don't let anyone offend me today, I don't have time to deal with it.” In fact even where learning to forgive others is concerned, practice makes perfect.
2) Self: not nearly as easy as you might think. Unless you have low expectations of yourself, a weak conscience, or a great hold on grace, it can be very hard to fully forgive yourself.
3) God: Don't underestimate the need for this. If God is all-powerful and all-loving (which He is), then the pain of what He allows can be a very real hurt or source of offense to us. The Father is absolutely innocent of any evil or wrong-doing, but our hearts may be holding hurt or un-forgiveness and need to release Him from any bitter judgments we may have been carrying.
4) Nature: rare, but real. Events, animals and objects that we may have associated with pain or trauma all may need to be released by forgiveness.
Watch a short video about forgiveness on our YouTube channel
A cat's teenage pregnancy led to a very funny encounter with God.