A right and different perspective on forgiveness is found in the lyrics of KJ52's song "Dangerous". As he points out, it's one thing to forgive, but a whole other story to forget. The problem is when we don't move past our hurts we are the ones held captive by the dangerous ways of resentment and bitterness.
You have been abused by someone you trusted?
You have regret for not making someone pay for a wrong they did towards you?
You have poured out your heart for your wayward son to come home and he still hasn't looked back or said "boo"?
Your family has fallen apart after an affair?
Someone has walked out and said "I can't take this anymore!"
You have been by hurt a co-workers harsh words and treatment?
A stranger ran over your sister and then drove home?
Fact...there are major hurts in the world that happen on a hourly basis. We live in a fallen world with people who hate, cheat, wound and break. This is life, and we have to deal with it. We've all had our heart broken at least once or twice, and yet we are told as Christians that we have to forgive. It's not that easy.
We can be consumed with infectious bitterness and animosity over the littlest or biggest of reasons. If we don't deal with the hurts we will harbor unforgiveness in our heart for whatever reason that doesn't matter and it ends up festering feverishly in our already broken and bleeding heart. Don't get caught up in all the infection.
The bottom line is that we have been forgiven by God for all our sins, so we in turn have to forgive. It's not a choice really but obedience. God covered ALL our sins with the blood of His son Jesus. We received God's grace free and clear. We received forgiveness with the same degree of grace. We didn't have to die on the cross for our own sins, nor should we crucify people on our crosses because of the ways we have been wronged. By holding onto an unforgiving spirit you are really the one being held captive for what has hurt you.
Forgiveness is the result of the outward act of Christ on the cross. Don't let the inward bitterness leave you groping in the dark places of hate and malice. It's a long hard road to nowhere. It's a dangerous way to live.
We have to remember we serve a God of great compassion and he forgets our sins without holding ours sins against us. His heart is captive for us in a forgiven state. He is slow to anger. He doesn't get riled up easily.
The Lord is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. Psalm 145:8
He loves us in spite of our sins and this same kind of love compels us to let go of the daggers of words and actions that can plant deep in our wounded hearts and restore relationships as He intended.
It's a dangerous love, a forgiving love, it's grace filled love and freedom! Forgive and forget as you have been forgiven and as your sins have been forgotten from the east is from the west. And then multiply that 70 x 7 times. And then hit repeat.
If forgiveness isn't central to our faith, is our faith really Christian?