I’ve heard the saying throughout the years. It is something that people say when you have the right to be really angry at someone for something that they did. It goes like this, “forgive and forget.” If there was a saying that is harder to do than that one I don’t know what it is. Yet Jesus made it clear that this is truly something we need to do. He said in the apostles prayer “forgive us of our debts as we forgive our debtors.”
I can tell you truthfully that there were a couple of incidences in my own life where it was very hard for me to forgive. There may be people in your life that you find hard to forgive also. I’ve always heard that we can do something that God cannot. That is remember the sins of our past after he has forgiven us. He can truly forgive and forget. As for us, we will always have the memories. Yet God can help us forgive but it has to come from him. On our own it is impossible for us to forgive someone. Forgiveness can only come about when God supplies the love for that person in our heart.
When we find ourselves holding onto bitter thoughts about someone it’s like trying to run carrying a fifty pound weight. That weight is going to be a burden that will slow us down! I have found when I was slow to forgive it didn’t effect the other person at all. That person went on with their life and here I was carrying the burden. Only when I gave the burden to God and forgave them in my heart was I able to get over and through my bitterness. There is a saying that goes “Don’t get bitter, get better.” God knows that we are going to be wronged while we are on this earth. Things are going to happen that will make us mad at others or mad at God himself. If there is someone you haven’t forgiven remember this, it probably isn’t effecting them. The only person it is effecting is you. You can choose like I did to let that weight go and lighten your load in the race. You will be surprised how good it feels after you give it to God and through him forgive that person! The burden you are carrying will be lifted and you will be able to move on!
If there was anyone who you might feel is justified to hold a grudge it would be Jim Ryun. Jim was a world class runner in the mile and 1500 meters. He was the first high school runner to better 4 minutes in the mile. He competed in the Tokyo Olympics at the age of 17 in 1964. He was the silver medalist in the 1500 meters in the next Olympics in Mexico City in 1968. 1972 was to be his big moment. He had trained very hard and just knew that the Gold medal was in his future. I have included a video of Jim’s story! This video is over 10 minutes but it is 10 minutes worth watching! It takes you from his early running days through the 1972 Olympics. Amazing footage through his triumphs and pains and how he chose to forgive. When he brought that unforgiving burden to God it was lifted from him! As you will see he is now running through life free and easy without the cumbersome weight!
“God allowed me to be disqualified from the world’s most prestigious athletic competition to show me how to be a real winner.” Jim Ryun