THERE IS LIFE AFTER EVERY MISTAKE!
(Part 4 of 4)
For ALL did sin,and are come short of the glory of God.
(Romans 3:23 YLT)
It is "wilful" sin that we find hard to deal with. If we think that someone has hurt us by mistake, then somehow it's easier to handle, but what about the premeditated stuff? What about the character assassination attempts, the slander that damages our hard earned credibility and the betrayal that takes place? "A whisperer separateth chief friends" (Proverbs 16:28 KJV)
Perverse people stir up contention; gossip makes best friends into enemies.
(Proverbs 16:28 The Voice)
Hard as it may be, we are obligated to forgive this too. How about our own wilfulness? All those times we knew better and those times we didn't? However I am here to say that THERE IS LIFE AFTER EVERY MISTAKE.
Again how about those prominent TV personalities who have fallen from grace in spectacular fashion and in the midst of great controversy? What of them? Do we judge crudely like so many have, with no advanced knowledge of their circumstances? In my last article I mentioned Todd Bentley and the process of being restored back into the ministry. It took a great deal of repentance and forgiveness on all sides. However what I did not share in the last article was how he disclosed that Christians [YES! Christians] sent him shocking hate mail and even death threats! This is hard to believe and there is little that surprises me these days!
Romans 3:23 says, "All have sinned and fallen short." ALL means ALL in scripture, there is none who escapes no matter how good they think they have been. We were born into sin. Not a day goes by without some kind of mishap or other. Yet one vital prerequisite prevails which Jesus taught this in the famous formula He gave to His disciples:
FORGIVE US OUR DEBTS, AS WE ALSO HAVE FORGIVEN(left, remitted, and let go of the debts, and have given up resentment against) our debtors... For IF you forgive people their trespasses [their reckless and willful sins, leaving them, letting them go, and giving up resentment], your heavenly Father will also forgive you. BUT IF YOU DO NOT FORGIVE OTHERS THEIR TRESPASSES [THEIR RECKLESS AND WILLFUL SINS, LEAVING THEM, LETTING THEM GO, AND GIVING UP RESENTMENT], NEITHER WILL YOUR FATHER FORGIVE YOU YOUR TRESPASSES.
(Matthew 6:9-16 AMP)
In this context I want to conclude this short series on forgiveness with the fact that our individual and personal relationship with God is ABSOLUTLEY EVERYTHING! I even want to suggest that it is only through our relationship with God, that we can overcome in any area of our lives, especially unforgiveness. Our RELATIONSHIP with God should be the axis on which everything in our lives spins. He is the security under which we operate. And without a personal relationship with God we have a dead religion. Once we have received the revelation of Gods love for us and that we have been forgiven, it is much easier to express our love for God and forgiveness towards others. When we loose sight of what we have been forgiven, we harden towards God and towards others.
This woman has been forgiven much, and she is showing much love. But the person who has shown little love shows how little forgiveness he has received.
(Luke 7:47-48 The Voice)
Our worship must centre on HIM, not on anything else and not just what we can GET out of Him. "We love Him, because He first loved us" (1 John 4:19 AMP). Our relationship can not just be about what we can accumulate.
Our whole lives must be an expression of our love towards Him. Not just about how well we sing in church or how gifted we are in a specific area, but how well we treat others for example. Every motivation must be to bring Him glory. "Whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God"(1 Corinthians 10:31NIV).
Lastly this scripture shows just how God holds us TOTALLY RESPONSIBLE to walk in forgiveness towards others.
[Now having received the Holy Spirit, and being led and directed by Him] if you forgive the sins of anyone, they are forgiven; if you retain the sins of anyone, they are retained.
(John 20:23 AMP)
PRAYER FOR THE DAY
Father thank You for Your forgiveness in and through my life. Don't ever let me loose touch with the reality of Your forgiveness, so that I can walk in that same forgiveness towards others. Just as I have been forgiven, I want to freely forgive. I want to walk and live in a right spirit at all times. Help me daily in Jesus name. Amen.
CONFESSION OF THE DAY
I am governed by God's Spirit. I walk willingly in a Spirit of Forgiveness. I live at harmony with my brothers and sisters in the Body of Christ. I live at peace with those around me on a daily basis. My mouth is not a place of curse but blessing. My heart and my mouth belong to the Lord. I walk by the Spirit and His fruits define my behaviour today and every day of my life in Jesus name.