Forgiveness – Resolving Conflict God’s Way
There are many heart dispositions which are essential for conflict resolution. We cannot wait until conflict comes to address the condition of our hearts. One of the foundational elements of conflict resolution is forgiveness. While one may not be surprised to see forgiveness discussed around conflict resolution, the counselor, counselees, and Christians must cultivate a heart of forgiveness for effective conflict resolution. How does forgiveness prepare our hearts for conflict resolution?
In this week’s episode of the Biblical Counseling Podcast, Pastor Jeff Christianson and Jennie Christianson explore the nature of forgiveness. Forgiveness is a foundational component of conflict resolution and has been given to us by Christ. If we allow the Lord to develop and build certain foundational character traits in ourselves, we are learning and applying essential qualities to handling relationships and conflict resolution in a biblical way.
Mastering the art of forgiveness allows us to handle relationships and conflicts in a biblical way. Christians who have been forgiven much should be masters of forgiving much. In Luke 17:3-4, Jesus instructs us on how to approach forgiveness. In light of his forgiveness of our sins, we must be willing to accept at face value any forgiveness extended to us by others. Even if we have doubts or concerns about the genuineness of the forgiveness, we must accept it at face value and by faith in the God of forgiveness.
Pastor Jeff and Jennie remind us that forgiveness is a choice. Many times people say that they don’t feel like forgiving. Luke 17:3-4 instructs us that forgiveness is not a feeling but a choice to release someone’s debt from your heart. Forgiveness is a promise to never bring up someone’s offense again and a choice to move forward. We must remember what our lives communicate when we struggle to offer forgiveness. Our ability to extend forgiveness communicates something about the forgiveness God has given to us. If we struggle to offer forgiveness, what does that say about God’s forgiveness?
Whenever someone harms us, we must extend forgiveness to prevent bitterness from taking root in our hearts. We can also lean into God’s sovereignty, knowing that he uses everything in our lives--even situations where we must forgive--for our good. We demonstrate our trust in God by granting forgiveness to others.
Want to learn more? Listen to this podcast to hear Pastor Jeff and Jennie address:
- The nature of forgiveness
- Tips for offering forgiveness
- Ways to fight against the root of bitterness
What You'll Discover in this Episode:
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