Sisters (Day 3 from Cleansing Thoughts)
At the beginning of my Christian walk, my sister gave me a book, in it was an exercise I've used many times over the years. I would like to share it with you in hopes that you too will learn to walk in the freedom Christ has given me.
Find a quiet spot, one where you feel safe and relaxed. Now close your eyes, and picture in your mind a person or situation that has caused you pain over the years. Possibly it was a time when you were a child, teenager, or young adult. It might even be someone or something you have to deal with today. But as the Holy Spirit brings things to your mind, allow Him to make atonement [at-one-ment] for you. Imagine your hand in His reaching out and taking the hand of the one who has hurt you, with Christ standing between you and the circumstances you feel no pain, only the warmth of His love flowing between you. Allow the Word of God to come into your heart as Jesus declares. "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid" (John 14:27, NKJV). The healing power of His Word allows forgiveness to fill your heart, and you will truly know the power of His redemption. Then you must "Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage" (Galatians 5:1, NKJV).
Won't you allow God to come into your heart and heal the scarred relationships of your past, filling you with His peace? I have known the pain you are in, I've been where you are, but God can make all things new. Holding on to the pain will only separate you from the Father for He tells us we must forgive to be forgiven.
"Whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses" (Mark 11:25-26, NKJV). There is another aspect of forgiveness we often forget; we must forgive ourselves as well. I know, at least for me, this is the hardest part, but to complete the healing process, you must forgive yourself too. Remember, "There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit" (Romans 8:1, NKJV).
Beloved child of God, don't you see, holding on to the pain will only hurt you and separate you from your Heavenly Father. Forgiveness is not an option in the kingdom of God, even for yourself. Won't you reach out and take the hand of Jesus and let Him restore the broken relationships in your life? If you will pray with me right now. "Dear Jesus, I reach my hand out to You, asking You to come into my heart and restore, make atonement, for the broken relationships in my life both now and in the past. I forgive all those who have hurt me, and I forgive myself as well for allowing the hurt to separate me from my Heavenly Father. And I now accept Your peace into my life. Lord God, I release those I have held in bondage due to my unforgiveness and apply the atoning blood of Jesus to all those circumstances. I thank You, Lord God, for Your healing touch. In Jesus' name, I pray."