Not many words can raise the emotions and quicken one’s heart beat more than the “f” word in the world of dysfunction we live. We are taught that we need to “get even,” revenge is good. People need to get “what they have coming.” Most media outlets promote this mentality every day. Our very souls and spirits desire for a “payback” to others. To the wounds which are not so deep, some can immediately let go, but we tend to tuck deep wounds inside our soul and hold onto them. It’s not intentional, we just do it. These are the kinds of grievances we have to learn to deal with or else our spirit will go through life with spiritual infection. We need to realize that by whatsoever measure we forgive, we will be forgiven. If we fail to forgive we limit the Lord’s moving in our lives.
I must confess that most of the women that come to the Lovelady Center have lead such tragic lives that I often find myself wondering how they could possibly forgive or forget. With each woman I stress how impossible it is to get the mountain of grievances and mistakes—inflicted both by others and by themselves—without the Lord with us. We pour over the scriptures and pray and eventually, out of obedience to the Lord, they find the strength to forgive through faith.
Matthew 6:14-16, ESV: “For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, you Father will not forgive you.”
Mark11:25, ESV: “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”
No matter how big the sin, forgiveness is a must for all of us. We cannot allow ourselves to be in bondage to the sin that can destroy us from the inside. When we refuse to forgive we cannot subject ourselves totally to God because we are being controlled by another. Forgiveness is a choice we make in obedience to the Word of God. Freedom cannot happen with a heart full of bitterness. So when anyone offends me, all I do is reminder my beloved Loveladies and I have no trouble forgiving them. Our example is Christ and His lessons of forgiveness but sometimes when we see Him working in others, it gives us strength.
Luke7:47-48, ESV: “Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many are forgiven-for she loved much. But he who is forgiven little, loves little……… And He said to her, Your sins are forgiven.”
Original devotional from Brenda Spahn, author of Miss Brenda and the Loveladies