November 02, 2016

Forgiveness Week 3

These are three questions we need to ask when forgiveness seems really too difficult for our situation.

We already looked at Jesus teachings on forgiveness and how little latitude there is for compromising on His design.  If we have experienced the grace that forgives our sins and we truly desire to love and follow our Lord, then we have no excuse in holding grudge, vengeance, bitterness, hatred, or selfishness in our heart when it comes to the wrongs of others.  We are commanded to forgive.

But sometimes it can be stinking hard!

So, if we have the other things straight in our mind, these three questions can be of help.  Why is is so hard?  Am I trusting:

1.  Man's character over God's?
God has shown that He can, does and loves to redeem and transform the most calloused and obstinate heart and character within the human race.  He may not do that in our specific situation, but the point is that it is not our call to determine whether He will or not.  Ours is only to obey.  When it is really hard for you to forgive, is it possibly because you are trusting that this person is too far gone for God to bring any conviction and change on?  It doesn't matter, just forgive and be where He wants you to be!

2.  My circumstances over Jesus' Power?
Jesus shows over and over that there is nothing outside His control or ability to bring about goodness through.  He is God, the Creator.  He can use anything - and does.  He spoke through a mule!  Imagine what He could do through you.  Is it possible that the reason you find it hard to forgive in a particular circumstance is because you believe that circumstance to  be too difficult and convoluted for God to show up and do anything redemptive in?  Ours is only to trust and obey.  No one will see what He can do through our obedience if we don't exercise obedience - especially in the worst circumstances.

3.  What I see over what His Living Word promises?
God has given so many promises of His presence, power and working in our lives.  He has given us ample proof that no matter what we see, He is behind the scenes working and nothing gets to us except through His hands.  If we believe that He is only perfectly good and loves us perfectly and wants the best for us, then we can assume that His promises will endure in even the most heinous situations of world affairs or personal trauma.  He is God and He is our Good, Good Father.

Faith is trusting God's revealed Word - not His unrevealed, assumed thoughts.  That can lead to a lot of problems.  But what His Word states, we can bank on.  So when He says forgive, and love, and trust, no matter what I see around me, that is what I need to put all my chips on.  What about you, it's not easy when the flesh has been wounded, torn, battered, and abused, but no one knows that place better than our Savior, and He says - "Forgive as I have forgiven you."  What a mark we could make as the hands and feet of Jesus in the world today if the people of Christ would forgive all the wrongs that are being held in hearts right now.

With you for His glory,