One of the saddest parts of my job is standing at a funeral and seeing what could have been, So many relationships wasted because of offenses that as I am standing there mean nothing now. While they were alive, it seemed important to them to hold a grudge. The missed what could have been.
Love...." keeps no record of being wronged." 1 Corinthians 13:5b
I am only writing about this one phrase today because I see the damage done by this nearly every day. When Paul is writing here the word which is translated by this phrase is the idea of an account keeping records. In this case, the account has a list of every time they were offended, every wound they suffered, and every rejection they felt. Everything is accurately accounted for, and the offense and grudge are strongly in place.
God doesn't expect us to be a doormat for people to walk all over but He does expect us to walk in the freedom and forgiveness He has sacrificed to give us. Psalm 103 he tells us (verse 3) that we are forgiven of all of our sins. He shares with us that while he could punish us for those sins, he chooses not to (verse 10). When we ask for forgiveness, we completely remove our sin, so it is no more (verse 12). This is God's kind of love for us. This is what we should receive and live every day. He has every right to hold a grudge, to not forgive as we continue to sin against Him. Instead, e chooses to forgive and keep loving.
Most people who hold grudges and are easily offended don't understand God loves them this way. We need to walk in this love so they can see it. Many times people have taken offense to things I say or do because they don't understand. Some have gotten angry at me, some left the church, other stew n silence but to each one, I must choose to keep loving because of what Jesus has done for me and because my heart breaks for their pain.
It is dangerous to hold a grudge or an offense. You can think you are a good Christian in every other way, but if you don't learn to forgive, the Lord will not forgive you (Matthew 6:15;18:34,35).
When we learn to love by walking in forgiveness, we walk in freedom. I know there are many offenses out there. I could be offended every day by things people do or say. I want to have the Lord's heart, and I want to live in freedom and purity of heart. I choose to see people through His eyes and choose to lay down my "right" to be offended, to let go and to be free!