Forgiveness & Trust

Goals for this Week’s Study:

  • Review Sunday Morning’s Message.
  • Define and help all group members understand what Forgiveness is.
  • Encourage all group members to take and talk about the Apology Language Test:
  • Help group members (especially new members) get to know one another.

Getting Started:

Open your group with prayer.

SHARE: Anytime you think of asking for forgiveness or saying sorry it seems like it’s always in a bad situation. Have you ever had a funny or awkward experience where you’ve had to say sorry or ask someone to forgive you?  

Sermon Notes: Take time to let everyone share some of the notes they took or anything that stood out to them from the message. Use this time to try to get everyone in your group talking! (A good tip for this situation would be to go around the room and have everyone share one thing that stuck out to them from PD’s sermon) Keep in mind, not everyone may feel comfortable talking yet, so try your best to help assist them in any way you can!

5 Truths About Forgiveness:

  1. Forgiveness relinquishes the right to retaliate
  2. Forgiveness does not mean that you forget
    • When it comes back up give it to God! He can’t take it from you if you never give it to Him!
  3. Forgiveness does not remove the consequences of your sins
    • Just because you have consequences does not mean that God is punishing you.
  4. Forgiveness does not rebuild trust immediately
    • Forgiveness opens the door to the ability to trust them again. If you want someone to trust you again, you have to be trustworthy!
  5. Forgiveness doesn’t always result in reconciliation.

The 5 Apology Languages

  1. Requesting Forgiveness – Looking at someone and saying you’re sorry
  2. Expressing Regret – Letting them know it hurt you because it hurt them
  3. Accepting Responsibility – Looking at the person you hurt and saying that you are sorry and that you were wrong
  4. Making Restitution – Saying sorry and doing whatever it takes to make it up to them
  5. Genuine Repentance – Saying you’re sorry and showing through Words and Actions that you’re changing

Study Questions

  1. What is Forgiveness? Why do we find it so hard to forgive at times?
  2. What’s the connection between not offering forgiveness and trusting in God’s Judgement? (Forgiveness requires that we trust in God’s Judgement. It’s not about what we feel is fair if they “get away with it”)
  3. What’s your Apology Language? If you haven’t taken it yet, which did you think most relates to you?
  4. As Christians, why should we forgive? (Scripture commands us to forgive, Remember that the Lord has forgiven you!) “Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.” – Colossians 3:13 NLT
  5. Is there someone in your life right now that you need to forgive? Is there any way your group can help or encourage you?

Final Thoughts:

  • Love keeps no record of wrongs.
  • Forgiveness goes against our fallen nature, it requires trust in God’s Judgement.
  • Forgiveness is not just a single act.
  • Don’t hold a debt over someone else’s head when God has removed your debt!
  • There are no but’s when you forgive someone!

CHALLENGE: Start each morning this week with a prayer to God thanking Him for the Grace and Mercy He has given you. Reflect on this throughout each day! Come back to your group next week and discuss how or if anything changed in your life because of it!

PRAY over your group! (Pray specifically for the relationships or friendships that need forgiveness. Pray that each group member is reminded daily of the love and grace that we have received, and let it change us and how we react to those around us. Pray that God is able to use this to reach those around us in whatever avenue of life that we may be in!)

Zach Hacker