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‘We must learn to forgive’

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Dear Friends: The following article is from the Ogdensburg Ministerial Association. We hope you find it uplifting and informative. Today’s article is titled, “We Must Learn To Forgive.”

By ELDER STEVEN AND SISTER BARBARA BENSON

Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

Jesus Christ taught if or when we are offended, we should not wait for the offender to come to us and ask for forgiveness.We should seek him out and establish peace with him.(Matt. 5: 23-24) Heavenly Father will not forgive us of our sins unless our hearts are free of all hate, bitterness and bad feelings against others. (Matt. 6: 14-15)

When asked by Peterhow often we are required to forgive, The Savior answered, until seventy times seven. That requirement includes ourselves as well as others. When we make a mistake, we should repent of it and then forget about it. Sometimes it is easier to forgive others than to forgive ourselves, but to “forgive all men” is to forgive everyone, including ourselves.

To forgive may be one of the biggest challenges we will face in life. When we forgive completely by forgiving in our hearts as well as saying so, we free ourselves to improve ourselves and be happy. As we forget ill feelings toward others, we will bring peace into our lives. If we have a forgiving heart, we can overlook and forget offences. Each of us should strive to pray sincerely, “Forgive us...as we forgive others” ( Matt.6: 12)

I am reminded of the story of Joseph, who was sold into Egypt by his brothers. Although his brothers sold him to slave traders,he forgave them and they had a joyful reunion in Egypt.(Gen. 45-46)

Jesus Christ gave us the perfect example of how to forgive those who offend us. “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34) As Jesus forgave, so must we.

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