Have you ever noticed how many times you have remembered past hurts?  Although we can’t go back in time to erase any event or do it differently, wouldn’t it be nice to be free from past hurts once and for all?
When a loved one dies, it is often said they are “gone, but not forgotten”.  Well, let me ask you something: Are your past hurts a “loved one”?  No?, then why not just let them be “gone AND forgotten”?  Do your past hurts keep coming back to haunt you?  Why not put them to rest PERMANENTLY? Yeah, Brother Jerry, but then I couldn’t feel sorry for myself anymore, so I’d rather hold on to them….Wow!  Sometimes the truth is rather RUDE, isn’t it?  You see, maybe you don’t ASK for those hurtful memories to return, so WHY does it happen?  I’ll explain why. There’s something you need to know right now, so pay CLOSE ATTENTION. We will say you’ve asked the Lord Jesus to be your Lord and Savior, and you’ve asked Him to forgive all your sins. We will say you’ve prayerfully forgiven those who have hurt you.  Then two things have happened.  One, YOUR sins are forgiven, firstly because you asked the LORD to forgive you.  And because it is written in the “Lord’s Prayer” in Luke 11:1-4, you have a second assurance of your forgiveness.  Let’s read about it:
Luk 11:1  And it came to pass, that, as he was praying in a certain place, when he ceased, one of his disciples said unto him, Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.
Luk 11:2  And he said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth.
Luk 11:3  Give us day by day our daily bread.
Luk 11:4 And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
Whether or not you realize it or not, when you pray that prayer you are actually making another request to God, “Don’t forgive me of MY sins unless I forgive those who have sinned against me.” In another place, John 20:23 said unto his disciples, Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained. Oh, you say you HAVEN’T got around to that yet?  That’s why they keep coming back to haunt you.  Consider this verse more closely.  When you remit, or loose your grip on one who has hurt you, they are turned loose.  BUT, whose soever sins you continue to hold onto, they are held (by YOU) and they will keep coming back to your remembrance to tear the scab off of the so-called healing you think you have from those festering past hurts, making them fresh wounds all over again.  Undoubtedly at some point in your life you’ve torn a scab off of a healing sore, only to have it hurt again like it just happened.  That’s what happens when you retain someone’s sins.
While you may think it an injustice to turn someone loose from their sins while YOU still remember the hurt, it is actually YOU that is getting free by forgiving them AND forgetting the hurt.  You say you can forgive but you can’t forget?  YOU LIE!!  God said HE remembers your sins no more, and if HE can forget, and HE created you, then He also created YOU with the ability to forget?  How do I know? Didn’t you forget to send us an offering when you meant to some time back? Uh-huh, Preach it Brother Jerry!!  Yep, I thought so.  You see, it IS possible to forget, it’s just a matter if you really want to.  Like I said, SOME just like to remember so they can feel sorry for themselves.  I thank the LORD that you aren’t one of them.  Moving on….
Satan has a much better memory than the LORD.  The LORD forgives and forgets, but don’t think for a moment the devil ever forgets everything you’ve ever done wrong.  That’s why he continually throws stuff up in your face to condemn you.  Here’s what I do when I’m reminded of a past hurt.  Actually, I do two things: I thank the LORD for the blood of Jesus that was shed for the REMISSION of our sins; ALL OF THEM.  Then I thank the devil for reminding me of some hurt someone did against me that I inadvertently forgot to forgive and put under the blood, so that it will NEVER come back to bother me ever again.  If the devil brings the remembrance of a past hurt to my attention to stir up bitterness or strife, I IMMEDIATELY, before getting side-tracked into doing anything else, pray and ask God to forgive that person, and I make sure I forgive them and loose them as well, per John 20:23.  That way I’M free, and THEY are free.  God 1, devil 0.  God wins again.  How many times do we need to do that?  Until there is no further remembrance of past hurt.  Can you do it?  Sure you can, that is, unless the blood of Jesus has lost its power over sin.  And it hasn’t.  I said, and it hasn’t!
Be like your heavenly Father today.  Forgive AND forget.  Like Father, like son (or daughter). Whom the Son sets free is free indeed. Jesus gave the example for us to follow.  He even forgave those who nailed Him to the cross, that being you and me.   And our sins?  Are they “gone but not forgotten”?  Nope.  They’re gone AND forgotten.  Happy are those who imitate the Lord Jesus in making full use of John 20:23.  Remember, if you don’t forgive those who have hurt you, then YOU are just growing a scab over a deep hurt.  Sooner or later, you’re going to tear it off, and you’ll wish you’d dealt with it earlier.  Remember, if it isn’t gone, then you haven’t dealt with it yet, and the devil’s just waiting the chance to come back and rip your scab off.  Beat him to the punch and get COMPLETELY free today.  List them one by one if that helps you.  And if you need to borrow a tablet or two from me, that’s fine, but as they say here in the Ozarks, Git ‘er done!  And hurt no more.