Allow me to be transparent for a moment.
In the past two weeks, I’ve been frustrated. Over the years, I have found one thing certain when I read through the Bible. God finds a way to highlight a word or concept in the text and he forces me to chew on it. I read a little more and there it is again. I go through my day to day life and opportunities arise that make me consider the message a little more. At church, I get my toes stepped on and typically it is the same lesson that God is trying to teach me everywhere else. Even movies (in this case Les Miserables) slays me with the message that I have been wrestling.
That word that I have been wrestling with recently: Forgiveness.
We all have people who we need to forgive (I being one of them) yet we let emotion drive a wedge between us. Why is it so difficult to do?
And the devil (yea I believe that there is one) doesn’t want us to do it.
C’mon, Andy. The devil is more busy with other things and he doesn’t care nor get involved in petty little things that you deal with. He’s dealing globally and with higher ups.
Well, yeah. I think that is true. And no, the devil is NOT God. He can not be at all places all the time. He doesn’t know our every thought, but he has more experience than we do at knowing how we humans will react to specific situations. If we would learn from our past experiences, and listen to those older/wiser mentors… we might be slow to anger and quick to forgive.
But we don’t.
We constantly allow filth and evil that is in the world come into our lives. Our flesh takes over. Our pride swells up. We may listen to the word, but we don’t allow it to soak in and form sound foundations in our lives.
And when we do this, we play into the devil’s game plan. We allow the strategy that the devil plays by – to back us into a corner where the only way out is weakened, damaged and often defeated.
Thankfully God forgives. And because He forgives… we should forgive.
Yet it is still so difficult.
There are times where we need ask for forgiveness, and then there are times that we just need to forgive those who have wronged us. It doesn’t always mean that the relationship will be fully restored, but at least the anger and hurt can begin to be broken.
The great theologian, Will Smith said, “Throughout life people will make you mad, disrespect you and treat you bad. Let God deal with the things they do, cause hate in your heart will consume you too.”
Bitterness isn’t the way God intends us to live. Grinding of teeth is not meant for us.
God is working on me. I’m working on it. To someone, this means something. To most, it is relevant.
We all need to work on forgiving those who we walk through life with.