Choosing to Forget

Choosing to forget

We have heard the catchphrase, Forgive and Forget.  We can tell someone we have forgiven them, but forgetting the incident is another story.  Forgetting is something that we must choose to do – and it often takes effort.  However, with God’s help, it is very possible.

Please consider the following verses:

Philippians 3:13 “Forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before.”

Colossians 3:12-15 “…if any man has a quarrel (complaint) against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye…”

Mark 11: 25-26 “…but if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses…”

Luke 6:35-38 “…forgive and ye shall be forgiven…”

Hebrews 12:1-4 “…let us lay aside every weight and the sin which doth so easily beset us…

For consider Him that endured such contradiction of sinners against Himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds.”

Hebrews 12:15 “…lest any root of bitterness springing up trouble you, and thereby many be defiled.”

Job 23:10 “…when He hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.”

Too often, we try to forget the hurts that we feel. We push them further back, back, back until they appear to be gone. But, this method doesn’t usually work in resolving the situation at all. If we don’t somehow deal with the hurt, we will often “feed” on it during the low times of our lives. What emotion is felt when that particular person(s) comes your way? What are your first thoughts? Do you immediately remember what he/she/they did to you so long ago – every minute detail?  We must make a conscious effort and decision to forget some of the hurts that we have experienced. We must “allow ourselves” to forgive and forget. We can tell a person that we forgive them, and really think we have.  When we have to face that person, however, reality will hit us in the face, reminding us of what happened. We can choose to ignore the voices in our heads or we can decide to take the bitterness on again like an old, forgotten friend.  It often takes a long time to forget, but when we take our feelings to the Lord, instead of harboring them and holding them close to our hearts, He will help us to forget, just as He forgets our sins.

We cannot do it alone.Only through the power of God can we truly free ourselves from the remembrance of hurtful words and actions. When we choose to coddle these negative, self-destructive, bitter memories, we burden ourselves down with unnecessary weights. Life is not as fun anymore – our freedom is gone. Only when we submit the weights and feelings to God will those burdens be lifted.  Only when we realize that God knows and understands and is the Chief Forgetter.  God allows things to happen in our lives for a reason. We must trust Him enough to realize that He has our best interests in mind and wants to make us a better person. Satan will try to convince us that we have a “right” to stay bitter, that the negative feelings will go away “in time” and that God understands why we are bitter. But God wants us to rise ABOVE – to forget the situation and hurt 100% – to trust Him for our lives and to get rid of the heavyweights that burden our spirits, and more importantly, that keep us from becoming all that He wants us to be.  Are you struggling with forgiving and forgetting today? Trust the Lord – give it to Him – He will give you the strength to overcome!

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