Tag Archives: forgiveness

Congratulations to Judith Ingram!

Judith Ingram, author of the Moonseed Trilogy and A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness, has two stories appearing in upcoming anthologies!

• Chicken Soup for the Soul: The Forgiveness Fix accepted her short story, “A Last Look,” which recounts a final visit to the house where she grew up and experienced abuse and illustrates how allowing ourselves to love and be loved helps us forgive and move beyond old pain. Book will be released November 5, 2019. (See the cover below!)

• Inspire Grace will publish her true short story, “The Language of Grace,” which describes how experiencing hardship gives us language to understand and speak into the lives of others who have similarly suffered. Launch party is scheduled for December 2019.

The Forgiveness Fix

As always, we love to celebrate our authors’ successes, and we hope you’ll join us in congratulating Judith on these two achievements!

Five Habits to Help You Forgive

 

Forgiving that person who hurt or insulted you might seem impossible, but it helps to remember that forgiveness is a skill you can learn and practice. Clinging to grudges and rehashing old wounds are learned behaviors that can be exposed and unlearned as you grow into a more forgiving lifestyle.

 

Below are five habits* that can help you to practice generous, constructive responses to life’s bumps and bruises.

 

Habit #1: Forgive what you can. – Forgiving is a process that often takes time to unfold, especially if your wounds are deep. Decide what you can let go of today, and ask God for the healing you need to let go of more tomorrow.

 

Habit #2: Seek forgiveness from others. – Admitting we when we are wrong and asking to be forgiven both humbles and cleanses us. Practice asking others for their forgiveness, and then let the mercy you receive soften your heart toward those who need mercy from you.

 

Habit #3: Pray for your offender. – Ironically, the one person whom you simply cannot bring yourself to pray for is the one person you most need to be in prayer about! Bring all your anger and hurt and resistance into the sanctuary of God’s presence and allow Him to fill you with the healing resources you need to move beyond your wounding.

 

Habit #4: Speak carefully. – The language of forgiveness is gentle and loving, patient and kindly, always seeking to heal and build up rather than to attack and tear down. Give up gossip and backbiting and practice speaking in a tone and language that honor God.

 

Habit #5: Encourage peacemaking. – We are called to peacemaking because restoring broken relationships is so close to God’s loving heart. When you respond with love instead of hatred and with mercy instead of condemnation, you make visible to the world the very nature of your heavenly Father.

 

Keep in mind, God doesn’t intend for you to forgive all on your own! Whatever He asks you to do, depend upon Him to give you the grace and the strength to do it. Forgiving your enemies is a sacred endeavor that has spiritual consequences, both for you and for your enemies. Obey God by returning good for the evil you receive, and trust in His sovereign authority and wisdom to judge.

 

*adapted from A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness by Judith Ingram, available from Amazon.com in Kindle, paperback, and audio versions:

 

Kindle version (save 50%):

 

http://www.amazon.com/A-Devotional-Walk-Forgiveness-ebook/dp/B005HJYS2A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979500&sr=8-2&keywords=a+devotional+walk+with+forgiveness

 

paperback version:

 

http://www.amazon.com/Devotional-Walk-Forgiveness-Judith-Ingram/dp/0983419825/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979560&sr=8-1&keywords=a+devotional+walk+with+forgiveness

 

Audio Edition—Cyndee Maxwell narrates (save 10%):

 

http://www.amazon.com/A-Devotional-Walk-with-Forgiveness/dp/B008MF5NCA/ref=tmm_aud_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979560&sr=8-1

 

 

Forgiving: How to Lighten Up and Let Go!

978-0-9834198-2-2-frontcoverJanuary 1st. It’s a culturally recognized event called The First Day of Your New Diet. This time you’re determined to lose those unwanted pounds! You’ve got a plan, you’ve got the drive. Failure is not an option. You’ve already budgeted money for new clothes that will show off the “new you” on Valentine’s Day six weeks from now.

Really, how hard can it be?

Those of us who have rolled on and off diets over the years know the drill. My diet might last a week, maybe to Day 14 or even Day 21. But sooner or later the drive peters out. I can’t stay focused on that new outfit. There is an emptiness inside me that has nothing to do with my stomach, yet food seems to ease the discomfort. In the end, slipping off my diet seems an easier course than exposing and dealing with the real cause of my restless hunger. Perhaps I’ve been betrayed by a loved one, and I haven’t been able to move beyond the pain and anger. Or a cherished dream was shattered by someone’s act of selfishness or cruelty.  I might live with the guilt of knowing that I caused another person’s pain, yet I cannot bring myself to ask for forgiveness.

If your new diet isn’t working, you might want to consider what’s lying beneath your hunger. What is it that eats away at your peace and keeps you from feeling full and satisfied? Chances are you’re suffering from a hunger of the soul that requires a soulful remedy. It’s not only calories but bitter feelings and regrets that need to be shed from your life.

God’s remedy for hungry, restless souls is forgiveness. Peace and healing follow when we humble ourselves and ask for the cleansing mercy of God and others we have offended, and when we in turn offer cleansing mercy to those who have offended us. In letting go of our bitter burdens, we lighten our souls, repair damaged relationships, and make room for the finer qualities of living—love and joy, patience and generosity, kindness and peace.

There is nothing magical about forgiveness, although its healing effects can seem miraculous! Forgiveness is a skill that anyone can learn. With practice, forgiveness can become a lifestyle as natural and reflexive as the old habits of anger and resentment have been toward those who offend, betray, or disappoint us.

Why not make 2013 the year when forgiveness helps you to lighten up your soul and let go of the useless baggage that weighs you down? The book, A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness, will show you how. Take the challenge to read and think about forgiveness every day for five weeks. Don’t be surprised if that soul hunger begins to subside as your capacity for joy and peace multiplies!

A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness is available on Amazon Kindle for only $4.99. Click on the following link to order your copy today:

http://www.amazon.com/A-Devotional-Walk-Forgiveness-ebook/dp/B005HJYS2A/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979500&sr=8-2&keywords=a+devotional+walk+with+forgiveness

Also available from Amazon:

Paperback version:

http://www.amazon.com/Devotional-Walk-Forgiveness-Judith-Ingram/dp/0983419825/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979560&sr=8-1&keywords=a+devotional+walk+with+forgiveness

Audio version:

http://www.amazon.com/A-Devotional-Walk-with-Forgiveness/dp/B008MF5NCA/ref=tmm_aud_title_0?ie=UTF8&qid=1356979560&sr=8-1

Beauty in the Beast

Okay, I admit it. Whenever I watch Disney’s animated feature film Beauty and the Beast, I cry.

I love the music. I get caught up in the story and look forward to the happy ending. The castle characters charm me with their all-too-human idiosyncrasies—motherly Mrs. Potts, self-important Cogsworth, romantic Lumiere. I hold my breath each time the enchanted rose drops another petal.

But it’s the ballroom scene that completely melts me. A beautiful girl in a beautiful gown dances with an elegantly dressed monster. Or is he a monster? We know from the look in Belle’s eyes that she has seen into the Beast’s heart and that she loves what she has seen.

The tale of Beauty and the Beast appeals because in it we recognize our own stories. We laugh at ourselves through the antics of the castle characters, and in the Beast’s redemption we hope to find our own. If we can believe the story, it means that true love can see past the ugliness of our sin into the beauty of our souls as God created us, and when we allow ourselves to be seen by Love, we are saved.

I can imagine myself dancing with my Savior, and although I would like to think I am the beautiful Belle, I know I am not. In the presence of perfect Beauty, I am painfully aware of my beastliness. Every ugly deed I have done, every unkind thought or malicious word, all seem to hang on me like a tattered garment, stark and accusing. I am an unmasked pauper in the arms of my King.

Yet when I have the courage to look into His face, I see only love, deep and steady and strong. And in the assurance of such love I, like the Beast character, find the courage to see my sins for what they are, and I want to change. I want to become as beautiful as the reflection of me I see in my Savior’s eyes.

How beautiful you are, my darling! Oh, how beautiful!  ~~Song of Songs 4:1

Gracious God, how deep and steadfast is your love for me! Help me not only to recognize my sin but also to value the beauty you fashioned into my soul as a good and perfect reflection of you. Thank you for your redeeming love that covers my beastliness and gives me the desire and the means to change.

For Reflection:

• Is there something particularly beastly about me that I am ashamed for God to see?

• Has anyone ever shown me love even though I was being a monster?

• What beautiful thing do I see in myself that God put there?

 

Written by Judith Ingram, author of A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness by Vinspire Publishing.

Please visit the author at her website: http://www.judithingram.com.

To view her book, A Devotional Walk with Forgiveness, please visit amazon.com.