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Forgiveness: A Surprising Way Forward Book Excerpt!

About the Author

Book: Forgiveness: A Surprising Way Forward

Authors: Mark Henderson and Michael Snuffer

Genre: Non-fiction; Interpersonal Relations; Religion

Release date: April 13, 2023

WHY AM I SO MISUNDERSTOOD? I am only trying to do what is right! Of course, I forgive, but I can’t seem to get past the pain. God seems distant. Does he even care about me?

Do any of these questions hit close to home? It may surprise you that the underlying cause is often hidden unforgiveness. Our closest relationships, emotional health, and perhaps even our faith seem to be crumbling around us, but most of us have no idea that forgiveness is the way forward. If we are honest, we don’t even know what forgiveness is. We may have a vague idea that it has something to do with “forgetting” or “letting go” but would be hard-pressed to come up with a working definition. Worse yet, we have no idea how to practice forgiveness in a way that brings lasting relief from the hurt we carry. Most of us are not trying to hang on to the pain, but freedom is elusive.

Freedom from your pain is within reach! Forgiveness is not a vague, esoteric concept, nor is it a lofty, out-of-reach ideal. Forgiveness: A Surprising Way Forward digs into the biblical definition of forgiveness, tells real stories of real people who have found healing, clears up some huge misconceptions surrounding forgiveness, and teaches us how topractice forgiveness. If we do not address the wounds of our past, they will shape our future. God has provided a powerful tool to help us find freedom—forgiveness is the surprising way forward!

Book Excerpt

It makes me wonder…doesn’t this “torture” sound a bit like hell? Is this guy sent to hell because of his unforgiveness?

The servant clearly repented. We see how he stood before the king and asked forgiveness for his debt, right? He asked God for forgiveness, and it seems he experienced God’s forgiveness. Did God, after forgiving the servant, then remove his forgiveness? What are the spiritual implications of Jesus statement?

Now, how do I apply this to my own life? God forgave me. If I refuse to forgive someone else, will God then withdraw his forgiveness? Will I be re-sentenced to hell? How is this consistent with the rest of the Bible’s teaching about God’s character of love and grace and salvation?

These questions may be pushing this parable a bit past what Jesus is teaching, but there are some real puzzles in this story. I have learned that my confusion is based on a lack of understanding. Jesus is not shallow. He is outrageously brilliant—and his understanding runs deep. The truths God is teaching in this passage are not simple, but as we unpack them, we will learn the truth about the consequences of holding on to unforgiveness.

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About the Authors

Mark Henderson received a Masters of Pastoral Counseling, was a licensed counselor, and served as a pastor of counseling for twenty years.

In Memory of Mark Henderson

Mark David Henderson, co-author of this book, passed away from cancer as this book was being finalized. Mark was a loving husband, father, and friend. He touched lives all over the world through his counseling ministry and often said he had a front row seat to God’s miracles. He always made sure the individual knew it was God’s healing, and Mark was simply the servant. His desire was to take what he learned and share it with others, which is the reason for this book.

Michael Snuffer has ministered as a counselor for more than ten years. Mark and Mike founded Equip2CounselTM, a ministry dedicated to providing simple yet powerful counseling tools globally to ministers.