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What if youíve asked for forgiveness from someone...
Posted by Rev. Jeff Dixon, Senior Equipping Minister at Covenant Community Church on Jan 2, 2002, 20:13

This is a tough question because it sounds like you have tried to do the right thing. You need to remember that forgiveness doesnít happen quickly or easily for most. The Bible says in Matthew 6:14-15, "For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins." As you read that verse remember that human forgiveness is not the basis of Godís forgiveness, it is the evidence of a Christian living his or her life on the principle of Godís grace.

If you have asked for forgiveness and the other party has not responded, you have done what you were suppose to do. Unfortunately you canít make people respond back the way we would like them to. Perhaps there is another issue going on with your family member.

Iíve said before, "You canít forgive until you have been forgiven and then only to the degree to which you have been forgiven." Perhaps the family member canít forgive you because they donít understand what forgiveness is themselves. When you asked for forgiveness and they chose to hold a grudge that became an even bigger problem in your relationship.

One thing that you must do, and I know this will sound hyper-spiritual, is pray for the other person. Pray that you will be a reflection of the love of Jesus in their lives, that they would accept your apology, that they would experience and understand the love of Jesus in such a way that they could then forgive you. It doesnít take your hurt away, but you are at that point giving the hurt to the One who can.

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