As part of the preparation for deliverance ministry, and obviously an important aspect of any Christ-based counseling process, we teach extensively on the need to forgive those who have wronged us. We talk about what it means to forgive, how you can know that you have forgiven and how to deal with emotional issues after the fact. Do we need to forgive God?
Some feel led to forgive God because in some way He allowed things to happen that the counselee thought were wrong or at the least hurtful. This need to forgive might be as poignant as seemingly standing by idly why they were abused, or not intervening to save a loved one or for some other issue.
When given the opportunity, I personally try to refocus the client in this area for the following reasons:
- God does not make mistakes
- He never loses track of what is going on and never abandons us
- He does not think and act as we do. We cannot presume to understand all that God does or does not do.
We often relate the story of Job, a righteous man, who seemed to be demanding his day in court before the Lord until he “saw” him (Job 42:5). The end result for Job that he repented before the Lord (v.6). While I think the book of Job has limited scope in how we deal with demons today (the church has power and authority to bind and drive out demons) I believe we can learn an example from Job’s brokenness and revelation at the end. He endured many griefs and trials he did not understand and did not sin against God (how many of us can say that?) yet He came to that place of trust and greater love even without understanding the reason for his torment!
Rather than forgiving God for something we perceive as a wrong on His part, doesn’t it make more sense, and bring more peace, to ultimately, like Job, rest in the knowledge of perfection of God’s perfect love, power and character. We can then, like Job, ask him to forgive us for questioning him and trust in all the promises of Scripture that mesh together to show that He is indeed, a good God all the time!