What does it mean to forgive someone?
Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive (Col 3:12-14).Life is never easy and as Christians this should be expected. Unlike the rest of the people in the world, God is in the process of transforming us to be like Jesus. We are to be his physical body on earth as Jesus Christ directs us, through His Spirit, from Heaven. This means we need to act like He did when He was here. In the Bible, it is called being a disciple. Perhaps the hardest thing to follow Him in is forgiveness.
Jesus came down to us even when we hated him. In fact, not only did we hate Him, we actually killed Him. Even the disciples who loved Him the most scattered when He was put in the hands of those who would crucify Him. Only a handful stayed by Him during this time in His life. It is safe to say that nobody did anything to please Him first. No! He came to us. It was Him, the person in the right, who came to us, the person in the wrong first!
When someone sins against us, don't we all wait for them to come to us first. When someone talks behind our backs, do we ever seek to be reconciled to them? Our first instinct, and usually last, is to tell the offending person off, but this is not what a Christian should do. Reconciliation should be a mark of a Christian.
In essence whenever we are not reconciling we are separating. If we were to weigh the scriptures, we would find that forgiveness trumps separation. The whole of Scripture is a redemption story, a story of reconciliation.
Therefore, as Christians, let us be known for reconciling instead of separating.