Sunday, March 12, 2006

Forgiving Others

Matthew 18:21-22 (NLV)

Then Peter came to him and asked, "Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?"

"No!" Jesus replied, "seventy times seven!

Always before I've read this and just thought Jesus was trying to make the point that when we forgive someone else we must truly forgive them. He was exaggerating to get his point across. However, today when I read this verse, another thought came to mind.

I wonder if not only was Jesus trying to show how serious He was about us truly forgiving others, but was also acknowledging the fact of our fraility as humans. I've come to realize that forgiving someone for something they've done against me is much like trusting God. It is not necessarily a decision that I make once and for all. I don't just wake up one day and make the decision and then everything falls into place from that point forward.

I've learned that trusting God AND forgiving others is often a conscious decision that I sometimes must make daily. Each day I must wake up and make the decision to trust God for that day. I believe at times I must also wake up each day and make the decision to forgive a certain person for a past wrong. Eventually it will be something that I can truly forgive, but in the beginning many times it is something I must do day by day. If I'm are not careful I'll catch myself once again holding whatever it is over that person's head.

God does not do this to me so I must be careful not to do it to others. God is able to forgive once and for all, but most times we as humans are not able to do the same. I think this is another example of how we need to be more like our children. When they forgive us for something, they do so with their whole heart. It take us "adults" a bit more time to do something wholeheartedly.

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