Colossians 3:13 (NLT)
13 Make allowance for each other�s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.

The apostle starts by saying we should bear with each other when we find faults; for each of us have faults so in good turn each other should be ready to let the faults of another pass. If those faults rise to an occasion when they cause personal hurt then we should be ready to give peaceful explanation for the hurt and forgive in our hearts whether the person takes responsibility for the fault or not.

When we are young we often don�t know the proper ways to handle situations in life. My mother was in high school trying out for a school club. For whatever reason there was a girl who voted against my mother joining the club and she did not make it into the club. Instead of asking why, my mother went off with hurt feelings. She held on to those feelings for years always wondering what this girl had against her.

Forty years later my mother was at a high school reunion and the woman who voted against my mother was there. My mom decided to finally ask what she had against her in high school. My mother explained how she was not allowed in the club because of her and wanted to know why. The woman looked puzzled at my mother and said she did not remember the incident. However, she said if she had done something to hurt her she apologized.

For forty years my mother carried a burden she didn�t have to carry. She could have asked the girl years before at school and perhaps found an answer to her question. But instead my mother carried that hurt feeling instead of allowing herself to forgive the person. The other person was unaware of my mother�s hurt and pain while my mother had been trapped in her own self-made prison of pity and hurt.

I heard a quote once that said when we don�t forgive people we allow the pain they inflicted to live rent free in our minds until we let it go. Forgiveness is more for us than for the other person. It frees us from the pain we are holding so we don�t have to carry that burden any longer.

Learn to forgive others so you don�t carry those painful memories through your life. Think of Jesus who on the cross had been beaten and tortured and yet He said, �Father, forgive them, for they don�t know what they are doing.�