Learning To Forgive Your Spouse
Copyright © 2007 Heaven Ministries

Forgiveness is a principled act of love we must learn to do, but is also a natural act we must feel from the heart if we truly want to forgive. Forgiving someone, especially a spouse can never be done in a superficial sense because the hurt will keep coming back to haunt us every time we have a disagreement with our spouse. 

To thoroughly forgive someone and get over the hurt, we really need to look at ourselves for a change, and realize that we are not without sin; maybe we did not commit the same sin as our spouse did, but we are still sinners, and a sin is a sin in the eyes of God. Why do we not notice the common sins that most people commit every single day of their lives? That would be selfishness, greed, lust, envy, gluttony, anger, laziness, etc. 

Until a person takes the log out of their own eye, they will have a hard time seeing clearly. They will have those rose colored glasses of self-righteousness on, and that is not good for any relationship, especially marriage. So the first step towards forgiveness is to understand that we are all sinners in some way shape or form, and we all need forgiveness every single day of our lives. Okay, so you did not commit the same sin as your spouse did, does that make you a better person then them? I don’t think so. 

If you feel comfortable with stoning your spouse every day with your hurtful words of unforgiveness then you still need to get the big fat log out of your way of thinking. If the log is jammed and you cannot seem to get it out, then you may be on a “holier than thou” pedestal, and it will keep you from forgiving in its completeness. 

But, “Let him who boasts boast in the Lord.” For it is not the one who commends himself who is approved, but the one whom the Lord commends. (2 Corinthians 10:17-18 NIV) 

Anyone can say “I forgive you” but only a special person can show forgiveness through the actions of principled love. I know, it hurts to be wronged by our spouse, and it is perfectly normal to go thru initial reactions according to that wrong, but at some point and time, forgiveness becomes necessary if you want to feel good within your spirit again. 

As long as we tell ourselves that we are better than our spouse just because we did not commit the sin they did, we’ll never forgive! As long as we tell ourselves that our spouse is not a good person because they sinned against us, we’ll never forgive. And as long as we tell ourselves how green the grass looks on the other side of the fence, we’ll never forgive – is that what you want? 

Ironically, we are not able to actually forgive from the heart until we ask God to help us. Humans are powerless to forgive without the Holy Spirit within them. Jesus Christ blessed us with His Spirit when He went back up to be with the Father. We are not alone to deal with life's problems and issues, we have the power of the Holy Spirit within us to help us to love others properly. We should not take our blessings for granted. As long as the willingness to forgive is there, God will help us to truly forgive. 

Bottom line is forgiveness is not just for the person you are forgiving, it is for your own healing and well being as well. Many people are stuck in the past because they are unable to forgive - the willingness is not there, therefore they are haunted by baggage from the past. That baggage will only go away once we forgive for good!

Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (Colossians 3:13 NIV)


Questions for Couples


Why is it so hard to forgive?


What negative emotions keep us from forgiving?


Why are we unable to forgive in its completeness without God intervening?


Why should we forgive?