Read an Excerpt
BREAKING THE POWER
OF THE PAST
Outside, winter pierced the day with a frigid, blustery chill; inside, a similar iciness permeated the church. Among the people gathered for the funeral, twenty family members sat scattered in eighteen pews. Snippets of conversations drifted back as I waited for the service to begin.
“Poor old soul lived alone. It was such a shame that John didn’t visit his mother more than a couple of times a year.”
“Did Aunt Marilyn talk to you?” “No, and I’m not talking to her until she talks to me!”
“Why didn’t Rita come to the funeral?” “She got mad at Mother’s funeral and hasn’t talked to any of the family since.”
What happened to create such division within this family that even at a loved one’s funeral they sat apart from one another and talked among themselves about other family members who weren’t there?
Sadly, dysfunctional families are nothing new and hardly unusual. Dating back to the days of Cain and Abel, lack of forgiveness has destroyed countless relationships.
And although our deepest hurts may come from family, forgiveness isn’t simply a family issue; forgiveness is a people issue. In every relationship it’s certain we’ll need to extend or seek forgiveness at some point.
So this subject of forgiveness touches us all and brings to mind many questions, including…
How can I forgive when the pain is so great?
What about revenge? Is the other person going to get away with what they did?
What if I choose not to forgive?
Can I be forgiven of my past mistakes?
Does forgiving mean I have to forget the past?
For the next six weeks we’ll look to the Bible for the answers to these questions and others. You’ll learn how forgiveness not only cleanses your soul and frees your mind but also unlocks the chains that hold you captive to the person who wronged you.
Through this study you’ll learn how to unleash the power of forgiveness in your life, letting it propel you out of painful and awkward situations and freeing you from the pain of the past.