About the Author

Sarah Mae has a past that would be her present if it weren’t for Jesus. A blogger, author, and co-author of Desperate: Hope for the Mom Who Needs to Breathe, she’s currently writing The Complicated Heart, a book for broken-hearted lovers of Jesus. Learn more at @thecomplicatedheart on Instagram or...

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  1. Gentle but jolting — it’s easy to forget that we follow a Savior who gave up all his “rights” and submitted to an unjust death on a cross.
    Praying right now for those who have more forgiving to do than they think they can manage on their own, and trusting that your words will be the beginning of a beautiful flood of restoration.

  2. Sarah Mae,
    Excellent points here!! I really appreciate the one in which you say you can hate the sin, but not the sinner. It is the person we are forgiving, but not the sin. Once again, I see God giving us commands not for commands sake, but for our own good. Like you illustrated, God tells us to forgive, not to let the other guy off the hook, but for OUR own good. He knows that unforgiveness, bitterness, and rage will eat us up from the inside out. He wants us to live in freedom and abundantly and one of the ways we can do that is to forgive. We aren’t condoning what was done by letting it go, but we are commending the one who wronged us into the hands of a Higher Judge… One who ultimately exacts justice. Great post!
    Blessings,
    Bev xx

  3. Sarah May, It is apparent God spoke to you for me. I am having a very difficult time because my husband of 53 years chose to join a false cult & leave our Baptist church.. Almost every day he yells much mental abuse at me because I refuse to “obey” him by accepting him & his church. It is very hard not to be constantly angry at him. I will try to forgive him instead of being so hurt. God bless!

  4. So true and thanks for writing it down with these points. Forgiveness is hard, but with God´s help we can walk away knowing we did all we could with God´s help, and we do not know motives, and perspective of the other, but God does. We can have peace, leaving it with God.
    We have forgiven a huge debt of several thousand dollars, but it is freeing to know God is with us, and knows the future. It is all His anyway.

  5. A powerful message for all to hear and apply to their own hearts. No one is above sin, but may we all be willing to forgive and trust God for the outcome, for He alone is the righteous judge. Let us not allow the sin of unforgiveness separate us from God’s best for us. Thak you for this

  6. Miss Sarah Mae,

    I am continuously blown away by the timing of these posts… your words have brought me peace and encouragement. I am grateful for the wisdom you have imparted and the distinction between hating the sin but still loving the person. Thank you. I pray you and your familyhave a blessed day.

    This side of Heaven,
    Summer Rae

  7. I know we are to forgive but what do we do when it’s family members who keep on causing damage

    • Karen, We are not to stay in a situation of abuse. If that is the case, then leave that situation and separate yourself from those attacks. If you need help, then by all means, seek it. There are people and organizations who will provide shelter and counseling. If it is a situation where the “damage” occurs at family gatherings, then avoid those gatherings. You are answering to God first, not humans. Ask Him to guide you in His Love.

    • Hi Karen,

      There is so much to say here, and in fact I’m working on an entire chapter on this very question in my new book.

      Here are some questions for you:
      Are you safe?
      Can you walk away or are you in the same household?

      Let’s start there.

      Love to you.

      • Thank you! Your questions are too often overlooked/not addressed or included when “preached, admonished, written, or discussed”–especially by Christian leaders! Blessings!

    • Karen,

      Praying for you sweet sister! You should pray about your situation & seek wise counsel. If need be leave the situation. You must look out for yourself first. Praying for a discerning heart to give you God’s wisdom!

      Blessings 🙂

  8. I needed to read this post having battled within how to move on from a deep wound.
    I am struggling from the rawness of the situation, while having to decide how I
    continue in the relationship. I have decided it best to separate myself with only
    necessary contact. I believe you poison yourself when you choose to let bitterness
    and resentment build up within. So I pray to my Lord to give me strength and the
    wisdom to handle the delicate emotions I’m feeling. I am absolutely powerless on
    my own, but Holy Spirit will give us just what we need to overcome when we surrender
    our fleshly thoughts and control. He that is within me is Greater!

  9. This is a beautiful post, Sarah Mae. I never thought I was a grudge-holder, until someone attacked my character. I found it so difficult to forgive that person. It took time. I also discovered that God had to help me work through in layers. I would forgive, real and true. But then, something would touch that wound, and I had to bring it to God, ask for His help to forgive again, and then walk in that choice. When I pray to see those who have hurt me through God’s eyes, and I pray this sincerely, God has a way of enabling me to look beyond my pain and softening my heart toward that person.

  10. Thank you for sharing this. I just posted it to my Facebook. I had to learn to send counselling when I was in my 30s and number 5 is the thing that really helped me the most to bust through my anger and unforgiveness. I feel like it changed my life. I think it’s awesome that you put this out there. Thank you.

  11. Sarah Mae,
    Thank-you so much for sharing this most uplifting post, and pointing out the difference between forgiveness of the person, and the sin itself.
    One of my favorites is, King James:
    ‘I say not unto thee, until seven times, but seventy times seven.’

    Have a blessed day all,
    Penny

  12. Sarah Mae,

    Wise words. Ephesians 4:32 “Be ye kind to one another, tenderhearted-forgiving each other, just as in Christ God has forgiven you. Matthew 6:14-15 “For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. Forgiveness is a two way street. You must do your best to forgive someone & not wallow in bitterness & hatred. The evil one would love nothing better than to see us all enraged and made at each other. God wants us to live in love.

    Blessings 🙂

  13. THIS is the VERY topic our pastor preached yesterday (Oct 22, 2017)!
    “An Expectation to Forgive”
    ~Matthew 18:21-35~
    1. Remember: the hurt, the offense, the injury.
    2. Relinquish: Let go of the debt owed, cancel the obligation.
    3. Restore: the relationship (often in the context of families)–even if it is a hand-written note. I CANNOT let THEIR RESPONSE to affect my attitude & my action-simply do what is RIGHT! Choose to FORGIVE – REGARDLESS!