by Chuck McAlister

This content is part of a series.

Forgiving Your Mate (4 of 5)
Series: Choosing Your Way To A Great Marriage
Dr. Chuck McAlister
Matt. 18:21-22


-- Series…. CHOOSING YOUR WAY TO A GREAT MARRIAGE ...The choices you must make to have the best marriage possible.

Max Lucado, in his book, The Applause of Heaven, writes, "Resentment is when you let your hurt become hate ...Resentment is when you allow what is eating you to eat you up ...Resentment is the deliberate decision to nurse the offense until it becomes a black, furry, growing grudge." Max then goes on to share a letter written by a woman who thought revenge would bring release, but found that it didn't:
"I caught my husband making love to another woman. He swore it would never happen again. He begged me to forgive him, but I could not – I would not. I was so bitter and so incapable of swallowing my pride that I could think of nothing but revenge. I was going to make him pay and pay dearly. I'd have my pound of flesh.
I filed for divorce, even though my children begged me not to. Even after the divorce, my husband tried for two years to win me back. I refused to have anything to do with him. He had struck first; now I was striking back. All I wanted was to make him pay.
Finally, he gave up and married a lovely young widow with a couple of small children. He began rebuilding his life – without me. I see them occasionally, and he looks so happy. They all do. And here I am – a lonely, old, miserable woman who allowed her selfish pride and foolish stubbornness to ruin her life."

--According to Doctors Les and Leslie Parrott in their book, When Bad Things Happen to Good Marriages,
"The failure to give or receive forgiveness probably accounts for nearly every marriage that does not endure."

* Forgiveness brings freedom to your marriage, freedom from guilt and bitterness.
...Freedom from guilt comes by asking for forgiveness.
...Freedom from bitterness comes by offering forgiveness.

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