“Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much” (James 5:16).
WE ALL WILL MESS UP AND HURT or offend others. The only way to resolve the hurt and restore the relationship is embrace a simple three-fold process: “I was wrong. I am sorry. Will you forgive me?” Any other process of forgiveness will be incomplete and not restore the offended.
“I was wrong” is taking responsibility. “I am sorry” is confession and repentance. And “Will you forgive me?” reconciles the relationship. All three are necessary to bring about true forgiveness and reestablishing the relationship.
Taking responsibility is a critical first step in this process. If we are not careful, we focus on our own needs and the other’s character versus looking at our own character and the other’s needs. Taking responsibility means living with the consequences of sin.
Confession and Repentance
Confession from God’s standpoint is seen in 1 John 1:9, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Confession is when I agree with God that I have wronged Him and another; repentance is when I turn and go in God’s direction, not my own.
It is an admission of wrongdoing before the Lord and the injured party. Don’t rush this process. Confession and repentance are necessary to avoid entrapment by Satan.
Asking for forgiveness will bring you back into a relationship with the offended party, if that is their choice. By asking forgiveness, it will take you off of someone else’s hook.
“I know for me, going back the person I’ve bad-mouthed or lied to is absolutely humiliating! But isn’t it interesting that “humiliating” has the same root word as “humility”? Part of humility is taking responsibility for my sin and asking forgiveness even when it doesn’t feel good. God wants to heal and restore your relationships, but it’s not easy.” — Chip Ingram
Purchase the Entire Devotional – “Experiencing Christ as Life and Leader”
The devotion above was taken from the 52-week Devotional entitled “Experiencing Christ as Life and Leader”.
Many give a mental assent to this teaching yet are often asking, “What do I do? What does Christ as life look like?“ Too often Christians err by moving too far to one side or the other—reducing the Christian life to a list of do’s and don’ts, or they actually do nothing.
These inspiring weekly devotions are just some of the actions that reflect the life of Christ in each of us, and they explore four areas as we follow the One Leader, Jesus Christ –
- A Foundational Focus
- A Personal Focus
- A Relational Focus
- A Missional Focus
Be challenged, encouraged, and spurred on to a deeper walk with Christ.
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