Word 4 Today December 27, 2011

LEARNING TO LET GO

Forgiving isn’t easy.  If you’ve ever doubted that, slap somebody on the face and see how “forgiving” he or she is.  The point is, because of our sinful nature, we seek revenge.  We want payback—no matter the cost. 

Jesus tells an interesting parable in Matthew 18.  He talks about a king who forgave his servant for an enormous debt.  After the servant begged and pleaded with the king to be patient, the king felt pity for the man and decided to clear the servant’s record.  After leaving the king’s presence, the servant sought out a man who owed him a much smaller amount of money, just a few bucks.  The man begged for more time to pay the money back, but the servant wouldn’t listen.  He had the poor man imprisoned for not paying his debt.

When the other servants realized what their fellow servant had done, they told the king, who became furious.  He scolded the servant: “Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?”  The angry king then sent the servant to prison until he had completely repaid his own debt. 

Now think about how that story applies to your spiritual life.  How often do you think God has forgiven us?  Can you count that high?  But how often do we forgive others?  “Then Peter came to Him and said, ‘Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him?  Up to seven times?’  Jesus said to him, ‘I do not say to you up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven …’” (Matt. 18:21–22). 

PRAYER FOR TODAY

Lord, how great a gift is the one of forgiveness?  Let us put ourselves in the position of needing it, of knowing we did wrong.  Then let us put ourselves in the position of being forgiven—it’s quite a contrast.

THOUGHT FOR TODAY

To forgive others is not difficult when we understand how God forgave us!

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