March 3, 2024

Walking in Forgiveness

Written by Pat Elsberry

When you forgive it allows you to let go of the burden weighing you down and eating away at your chance for healing and happiness.”

Thoughts from daily Bible reading for today – March 3, 2024

Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends. Proverbs 17:9

Forgiveness means different things to different people. It involves intentionally letting go of any resentment and anger you may harbor against another. Whatever the act was that hurt or offended you, it might always be with you, but walking in forgiveness can lessen the grip it has on you. 

We have all had someone do or say something that offended us. But how do we handle forgiving someone who is no longer here? And, is it conceivable to receive forgiveness from someone who’s already died? 

Maybe you had an argument with your loved one and shared some harsh words before they ran ahead to Heaven, and you never got the chance to tell them how sorry you were. First of all, they are not holding that against you. Heaven does not allow for anger and dissension. It’s a place of pure love.

In Heaven, no one harbors revenge, resentment, or anger whatsoever. They are given a new lens to look through, which is with total unconditional love. 

Did you know that there are three types of forgiveness? Exoneration, forbearance, and release. In the case of forgiving someone who is no longer here, release is the one that applies.

Release asks that instead of continuing to define your life in terms of the hurt done to you, you can release any bad feelings and your preoccupation with the negative things that have happened. More importantly, release is critically significant. When you forgive, it allows you to let go of the burden weighing you down and eating away at your chance for healing and happiness.

If you don’t release the pain and anger and move past dwelling on old hurts, you will be allowing the ones who hurt you to live rent-free, in your mind and heart, forever reliving the oppression that the original incident started.

The Old Testament references forgiveness around 30 times, and the New Testament references it more than 40 times. Obviously, walking in forgiveness is essential to our Heavenly Father. If we want to be forgiven, we must forgive others. And how incredible it is that when we ask for forgiveness, God throws it into the sea of forgetfulness and remembers it no more! (Micah 7:19)  

Practicing forgiveness can have powerful health benefits. Studies have shown that forgiveness is associated with lower levels of anxiety, depression, and hostility, along with having higher self-esteem and greater life satisfaction.

If something is weighing on your heart and you wish to share it with your loved one who is no longer here, you can write them a letter. Get a piece of paper and a pen, or sit at your computer and pour your heart out to them. Once you’ve expressed everything you want, you can either keep or destroy the letter. The important thing is that you begin to let your heart be free to move forward in your healing. 

“Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you” (Colossians 3:12-13).


Jesus, when you walked this earth, you were the ultimate example of a person who forgives others. Please help me be more like you and walk in forgiveness extending love to those who have hurt me.


If you’ve been harboring unforgiveness toward someone consider calling them, or sending them a note to tell them you forgive them. Even if you never receive a response the heavy burden you’ve been carrying will be lifted.

Related Reading

Psalm 86:5; Psalm 32:1; Mark 11:25; Matthew 6:14-15

Worship Resource

Matthew West: Forgiveness


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