Monday, January 28, 2013

The Heart of the Matter: Forgiveness...


Forgiving is rediscovering the shining path of peace that at first you thought others took away when they betrayed you...{Dodinsky}

I read a post over HERE today...it got me thinking...really thinking. I started going down my mental list of life; all the scars my heart has from childhood to adulthood. Funny how a mental file cabinet is easily sorted by person, date, time, and details of the event. 

Its easy to say the words "I forgive you", mentally forgiving is the easiest of all. It's easy to say it, its easy to act like things didnt happen, its easy to go on with life and put on a mask of emotions towards someone else or an event that took place in your life. 

Sometimes its not easy though, sometimes you may verbally say you forgive someone but then your actions dont reflect that same forgiveness. This has been me lately. 

Jesus forgave us from His heart. He forgave every single thing we have ever done, and every single thing that had, at the time, not happened as of yet. He blessed us with life free of punishment, from judgment, and from the sins of our ancestors. He not only blessed us with eternal love, but eternal forgiveness. When we mess up and run into His arms, He doesnt tell us how wrong we were, He doesnt bring us all the things of our past, He doesnt keep a mental file cabinet of all the wrongs we have ever committed, He only tells us how much He truly loves us and cares for us, and that we are forgiven. Once we have asked for and received His forgiveness, its wiped out, it doesnt go into a folder marked X-date, X-person, X-event...its wiped clean from our slate...He wont bring it up to you again. 

Why cant we do that for ourselves and others? Why is that same unconditional love and forgiveness given to us, given to others from us? Why do we torment ourselves with that laundry list of things we should and shouldnt have done, or things others have done to us? Un-forgiveness only harms us, it harms us mentally, emotionally, and sometimes physically. We end up tearing ourselves apart while the other person is dancing freely in life, you suffer, not them. 

Forgiveness mentally and from the Heart are very different. When you forgive mentally, your actions may forever show you have not forgiven someone. When you forgive from the heart like Jesus did/does for us, its wiped clean from memory, it doesnt tarnish someones slate with us. 

Think about it, if you were faced with the option for revenge or mercy which would you choose for someone who has wronged you? Would you run with revenge and try to make them feel your pain, or would extend mercy and love to someone like Jesus does for us?

Its a lot to think about huh?! I bet your mental filing cabinet is soaring with files exploding from the drawers...Let it explode for Satan, and let your heart be overwhelmed with love, mercy and pure forgiveness for your fellow neighbor...let it go, even if only you forgive, thats what matters. You can only answer for you, nobody else. Extend what has been extended to you freely to others just the same.

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you...
{Ephesians 4:32 ESV}

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2 comments:

  1. We just had an amazing sermon this weekend on the very same topic and how bitterness can come between you and God. I think we all struggle with this one, it can be nearly impossible to completely let go of a hurt on all levels.

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  2. Bestie- You know I struggling majorly with this right now. Thanks for blogging and reminding me how important it is to truly forgive people. Love you:)

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