Sunday, November 19, 2006


I written posts about three of God's promises -- joy, strength and growth. Forgivness is another one of them.

I don't think we can understand forgiveness unless we grasp that God's concept of it might be the opposite of what we expect if to be.

  1. Forgiveness isn't something we earn. It's something that we are given -- it is so completely wrapped up in grace that they can be indistinguisable from each other.
  2. The grace isn't always only a gift for the one being forgiven -- it is grace for the one who is forgiving. Sometimes, the grace for the forgiving is the only grace that is realized.
  3. We have to struggle with forgiveness -- God does not. From God, forgiveness is abundant. When we find ourselves outside of that forgiveness, it is never that God chooses not to forgive us; it is that we have taken a path away from God. It is we who are ignoring the grace of forgivness, not God who is failing to offer it.
  4. Forgiveness, which sounds like it might make "everything better" actually does nothing to change the consequences of poor choices (sound familiar? It was one of the points I tried to make in Sunday school today.)
One of the most active pictures I had seen in my mind of God's forgiveness involved prayer for one's enemies. That kind of prayer, when done in a spirit of grace and forgivness, involves more that just prayer for the enemy to be changed; it meaned standing in font of God, with the enemy behind us, and praying for the other person -- praying the prayer that that person is unable to pray.

Update: Weight lifted, 10 days later? Still lifted.


Anonymous Shelly said...

I really like your last paragraph. I have prayed for a school bully who was threatening my son - but that prayer was for change and for more opportunities in his life. In future situations (hopefully not involving a bully) I'll add forgiveness to the request as well. Thanks for the insight!

8:20 AM  

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