How to forgive someone who has hurt you. Pray!
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I exposed a sin, reluctantly, that had been going off and on for years. It was destroying my marriage and I was sick of it. The other person involved (a christian for years) was so irate and she had every nasty word and hate thrown my way.
I was deeply hurt by the ongoing sin and the response by those involved and even from (in my opinion) the passivity from the others who knew what was happening.
I’m sure we all could quickly come up with one or two names of people that have hurt, betrayed, lied and/or offended us. It happens. We are a fallen people.
Our first human response is usually to want nothing to do with them any longer and maybe even try to hurt them back in return by snubbing them or worse. Isn’t there a bible verse that says something like an “eye for an eye”?
The “eye for an eye” quote comes from the book of Matthew in the New Testament. Let’s take a closer look at what it says:
God doesn’t want us to take revenge, hate, nor return the hurt towards those that have scarred our hearts. And equally He doesn’t want us holding onto the pain and letting it fester inside us and allowing it to turn into bitterness.
It’s actually the opposite of what He wants us to do. Read Romans 12:19.
God wants us to pray for those that hurt us.
How To Forgive Someone Who Has Hurt You
To be completely honest, my first thought of God wanting me to pray for those that hurt me was a huge NO. I don’t want to think about them. I’d be content if they didn’t exist. To be sure, I definitely wasn’t thinking about praying for them.
Let’s see what the Bible says on this issue.
“Bless those that curse you, and pray for them that despitefully use you.” Luke 6:28 KJV
But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use and persecute you.” Matthew 5:44 KJV
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Ephesians 6:12
However, those of us in Christ, need to stand on the knowledge of who He is and who we are in Him. We should be firm in our identity in Christ. This includes acknowledging and responding to painful situations in a way that glorifies Christ.
God loves those that hurt us. He wants to see them restored, redeemed and renewed in Him. He has hope, grace, mercy, forgiveness, wholeness, joy, peace and so much love for ALL of us – even for those that hurt us.
I want to offer you encouragement for when you are battling the thought of praying for someone that has hurt you.
God sees. He sees and He is big enough to handle your raw feelings and emotions. Tell Him all about your pain. God knows what you are thinking anyways. You don’t have to hide them or pretend you feel differently. It’s ok to not be ok with the harm others have caused you. However, after you tell God all about your pain, humbly pray for your offender – asking God to bless them. And, it is ok to tell God you are having a hard time praying for the ones that have hurt you.