After being backslidden for 40 years, I was talking to my Pastor and the subject of forgiveness came up.
As a child, I was sexually abused and as the memories came back, I realized I still harbored hatred and bitterness towards the man who had done this to me. Unable to locate him, I prayed and asked God to forgive me for these feelings and to forgive him for what he did.
As I went back over my life, I prayed and asked forgiveness for all the bitterness and hatred that had filled my heart. I began to ask God to forgive those that had hurt me and those whom I had hurt. Anyone I could locate, I asked forgiveness of them and forgave the ones who had hurt me in the past.
It came down to one last person my stepbrother who had said and done hateful things and caused much dissension in our family. I hadn’t seen or been in contact with him for 40 years and there as hatred and bitterness in my heart. Unable to locate him, I just gave it to God asking Him to forgive me, cleanse my heart of all these wrong feelings, and forgive my brother as well.
In April 2004, just before going to Donner’s meeting in New Hampshire, I received a call from my sister She had gotten an Easter card from our brother, and had his address and telephone number!! I called him and when he answered, I began to weep and sob. When I finally regained my composure, I told him that I had recently come back to the Lord and needed to ask him to forgive me for harboring all those wrong feelings and even hatred I had kept in my heart all of those years. He said…I, too, have recently been born again and of course I forgive you!!
When those words were spoken…my heart soared! It was such a cleansing moment, and I knew that now I could get on with my spiritual journey and growth.
That evening, when I attended Donner’s meeting, it was with an entirely different attitude. Donner ministered to me that evening, and since that day I have truly been set free!!
I urge anyone who is harboring hatred and unforgiveness in their hearts to ask God to forgive them and to seek out those whom they have hurt or those who have hurt them and make things right with them and with the Lord!!