Getting Past Your Past
Week 3: Kill the Creep
We’ve been talking about “Getting Past Our Past.” Even if we can Lose the Labels by embracing the new name God gives us, and then forgive ourselves of our past, we can still struggle in a big way with forgiving others. Most often, we put on a good face and act friendly, but underneath the surface, in the back of our mind, we would describe that person with a four or five letter word that would make our mothers blush if we said it out loud. Anne Lamott said this: “Unforgiveness is like drinking rat poison and hoping it kills the other person.” Let’s talk about how to “Kill the Creep” of unforgiveness.
ICEBREAKER: • What was one of the worst things you did as a child that you asked forgiveness for? What did you learn from your experience?
Read Hebrews 12:15. Someone else read Mathew 18:21-35. What is it so difficult to forgive those who have severely hurt us?
Reread the quote from Anne Lamott. How have you seen unforgiveness and bitterness hurt you?
When you think about the people you need to forgive, who comes to mind? What is keeping you from forgiving this person?
Think about how God has forgiven you. Then read Matthew 6:14-15. What can the forgiveness we have received from God teach us about forgiving those who hurt us?
Read Matthew 5:43-48. How different would your life and your relationship with Jesus be if you removed all bitterness from your heart by forgiving those who have hurt you?
Why is prayer such a vital part of forgiving others?
It reveals something in our hearts when we can receive God’s forgiveness for our own sin but withhold forgiveness from others, whether it’s a spouse, a friend, a coworker, or family member. Forgiveness is the only way to live in real freedom, and that means receiving God’s forgiveness as well as forgiving those who hurt us. Tell the group what specific steps you need to take this week to forgive those who hurt you. Then, commit out loud to your life group to pray daily for the person(s) who hurt you.
CHANGING YOUR MIND
If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you… Matthew 6:14