...If one has a complaint against another,
forgiving each other;
as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.
As we are learning from Paul's letter to the Romans, we have been forgiven richly because of Jesus' life, death and resurrection. Jesus has paid our debt with his life and death. Because the foundation of our relationship with the Living God is grace and forgiveness, one of the chief virtues that is to mark our lives with one another is forgiving one another.
Until we see Jesus face to face, we will still sin against one another. As followers of Jesus, we seek to love each other so well that we don't sin, but regrettably we will still sin against one another. So we must learn how to forgive as we have been forgiven.
Over the next few weeks I will invest the gospel reminder toward gospel instruction on how to forgive one another our sins against one another. What does it mean to truly forgive another from the heart?
Where does forgiveness toward another begin? It doesn't begin with knowing another's sin against you. Where does it begin? It begins in knowing and experiencing the great forgiveness we have been given by God in Jesus our Lord. If we start with how big another's offense against us is, forgiveness will feel impossible. But if we begin by reminding ourselves of the offenses we have been forgiven by God, we get power to forgive. This is why the commands to forgive one another are grounded in the Lord's forgiveness of us.
Remind your heart today of the Lord's forgiveness of your sins. Ask the Lord to remind you of his grace extended to you. Cherish the abundance of grace God has lavished on you in forgiving your sins. Ask God to melt your heart with his grace toward you. It is in this position—the position of being justified by grace—where we get power to forgive the sins of others against us.