Well, they are not wrong, they are right, for the Bible tells us "For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you: But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." [Matt6:14-15]. I totally agree and say amen to that. But I also believe that it's not really the best way to tell someone to forgive with a raised forefinger if that person reacts with maximum of emotions to that subject at that moment. Sometimes it hits the opposite reaction than the preacher wanted to have them to have. They might think "Oh great! Now that I can't forgive I am doomed and God doesn't want to do anything with me!". Then they start to feel unworthy and fall into self-pity and great despair. This isn't right, is it?
Even if we rebuke someone based on the Bible, we shall do that in and with love. Because Jesus always talked out of love! And the reason that God wants us to forgive, aside from His justice, is because He wants us to be free and not to suffer in the cage of unforgiveness. So. You urge people to forgive? Nice. But how about to also tell them HOW to forgive? I always heard people saying "OMG you HAVE to forgive, how can you NOT???? Now God won't forgive you as weeell!!! *dooom dooom dooom*". But I only heard maybe 1-2 times also telling them HOW to forgive. This is sad and my heart hurts for those who couldn't forgive until now. Mostly in their minds they have only one question running in a vicious circle: "Why can't I forgive? How can I forgive? How to do?"
This is the way of forgiveness:
The reason you cannot forgive is because you are hurt, bitter, angry or broken in your heart. That's bad for your heart and sometimes even influences your health. God doesn't want that, He wants you to be happy and healthy. But people cannot heal their heart on their own. That's one of the reasons why Jesus shed His blood on the cross!
The way of forgiveness is nothing other than the love of Christ.
I believe God understands our heart and that it's not always easy to forgive due to great reasons. But our God is greater! Actually we cannot do anything without Him anyway!
So, it actually is easy how to forgive: you simply ask God for help. In your hurt/bitter/angry/broken state seek God for healing, freedom and peace. Then forgiving will be an easy thing to do.
Do not be afraid and just pray to God "Jesus, I want to forgive as You have told me to. But it simply seems to be impossible for me because I am so deeply hurt/bitter/angry/broken! Please, I can't do this on my own, you have to help me and heal my heart so I can forgive ○○, Jesus! Right now I want to let You do Your work in me, Lord. Please replace this heart with Your love, peace, freedom and comfort. Thank You that You already have prepared a solution for this helpless me." until the end. And I promise you, God will be so happy about that heart and He will definitely help you to forgive! God is faithful!
This is what God generally wants us to do anyway, don't you think so? To come to Him and talk to and ask Him about anything, humble and with our whole heart; to have relationship with Him, like a daddy, friend and bridegroom! If our heart desires Him the most He will never let us go, never!
God looks into your heart.
God wants your heart.
What is your answer?
Forgiveness is important. It's even in the Lord's Prayer. Jesus wouldn't have put that in that if not important.
Forgiveness is essential.
As essential as salvation is.