Mark 11:24-25 I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you've received it, it will be yours. But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your father in heaven will forgive your sins, too.
Forgiveness! Oh Forgiveness!! We can't be forgiven unless we forgive. I have recently really noticed that the Lords Prayer says in Matthew 6:12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us.... Look at those words closely... forgive our sins "as we have forgiven" those who sin against us. If we don't forgive, we can't be forgiven!!
Sometimes it seems we humans have the hardest time forgiving the smallest things!! Have you ever noticed we can forgive those things that seem really big... so big they are on our mind so much that we finally just give up and forgive. Then there are those little things that happen...something somebody says.. or a minor annoyance that somebody does to us over and over again without thinking, and we keep feeling angry every time we think about it. Something like "She always invites so-in-so to lunch and she never invites me!" Here we have forgiven somebody that has taken something from us and we can't seem to forgive somebody that didn't invite us to lunch (an example only). Can you imagine unforgiveness over a "lunch invite" keeping us out of heaven?
You may ask yourself, "But how can I forgive that?!" God forgave us everything. Every sin we commit against someone, we commit against God, Himself. As a parent we can often forgive anything but something somebody does to our children. Those seem to be the hardest things to get over, something done to our children. But each of us are God's children... so anytime we do something to somebody else we are sinning against one of God's children. Yet we go to God all the time and ask for forgiveness. Jesus died on the cross so we could have that forgiveness... How can we not forgive others... look at all God forgives us!
We might think that forgiveness of others can be impossible...but with God all things are possible. Sometimes it takes the grace of God to grow forgiveness in our hearts. Sometimes we have to pray and pray and pray for that forgiveness to take root. But our forgiveness of others is a must if we are to be forgiven. We can not go about overlooking this fact! Prayer is the key... recognizing that grudge swelling up inside us needs to be our signal to pray instead of anger taking root. Prayer is our fertilizer for forgiveness... prayer makes forgiveness take root. Our forgiveness of others leads to God's forgiveness of us.