Last week, as I went through my Facebook feed, I saw a rest in peace tribute to an old friend that I hurt yet never reconciled with. It’s kind of crazy scrolling through Facebook and finding out that someone who you once hurt is now gone… what’s crazier is knowing that you never took the steps to right your wrong. The days passed on and you moved along.
Asking for forgiveness is just as necessary as granting forgiveness. We focus so much on those who hurt us and never apologized that sometimes we fail to be attentive to the offenses that we have made and neglect to be accountable for our actions.
Asking for forgiveness is so important that as Christians we are instructed to do so before presenting an offering to the Lord. In Matthew 5:23-34 we are instructed “Therefore if you are presenting your offering at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your offering there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and present your offering.” God is more concerned with our reconciliation with those whom we have hurt than he is with you giving him your tithe. This is because above all else, God is a God of love and if you cannot be in harmony with other people then you cannot fully carry out the lifestyle that he demands of us.
Don’t wait for something “big” to happen to reach out and seek forgiveness or reconcile with those whom you are estranged. What hurts have we caused that we still ignore? Who needs to hear us say, I’m sorry in order to heal? Whose name crossed your mind the entire time reading this? Pick up the phone, schedule a conversation, write that letter… Use whichever form is most sincere for you and can be best received by the one you are asking for forgiveness… and ask for forgiveness.