If you forgive others their transgressions, your heavenly Father will forgive you ~ Matthew 6:14
The converse is true also.
He who does not forgive, is forgiven not.
Pride sometimes gets in the way of forgiveness.
Pride would tell us that we have been hurt so deeply that there are some things that can not be forgiven.
Thank God that He does not hold our transgressions against us even when our fellow man does.
If we hold the transgressions of others against us, how could we ever again pray the Our Father prayer?
Would we skip over that bit in our prayer lives?
Would we skip over the Our Father prayer we pray in every Mass ?
Just because we can say the words doesn’t mean that we mean the words from our hearts, from the depths of our very souls.
There is no fooling God with outward displays of piety and devoutness while inside we are rotted through to the centre of our being, embittered and eaten up with a hardness of heart that grasps on to that which we should let go.
There is a very good reason why Jesus taught us the Our Father prayer, and that is because while it can be said in 30 seconds flat and infused with complacency, it is actually a very difficult and challenging prayer to pray…
Our Father, Who art in heaven
Hallowed be Thy Name;
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us;
and lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil.
(emphasis mine, obviously)
How can we ask God to forgive us if we are unwilling to forgive others??
Of course, we must make a conscious decision to forgive others and live out that forgiveness.
Not just say the words rote.
In other words.
We need to pray it, not just say it.
…and we must also forgive ourselves our (confessed) transgressions.