Read Matthew 6:12
12 and forgive us our sins,
as we have forgiven those who sin against us. (NLT)
At first glance, this phrase of the Lord’s Prayer seems to suggest that God’s forgiveness of us is conditional on our forgiving others. But we have to remember that God’s forgiveness of us is never a response to some worthy thing we do. We can never earn it.
However, his forgiveness of us and our forgiving others are connected. Those who have tasted the grace and mercy of God are bound to extend such grace and mercy to others. If we stubbornly and consistently show no interest in offering forgiveness to others, it is an indication we have never received it from God.
Of course our forgiving others is a challenge and is often an up-and-down process. But as long as we have that intention and are, with God’s necessary help, pursuing such an outcome, we are on the right track. Those who are oblivious to the need to forgive are those in great danger.
God wants us to treat others as he has treated us. So we ask ourselves how we would feel if God treated us as we treat those whom we find difficult. God has forgiven us so much. Can we not at least begin the journey of forgiveness to those who perhaps have wronged us so little?
Forgiven people are to be forgiving people.