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Dec 05th
Home Sections The Daily B.R.E.A.D. March 06, 2009 - Friday Meditation (Learn to Forgive!)
March 06, 2009 - Friday Meditation (Learn to Forgive!) PDF Print E-mail
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Sections - The Daily B.R.E.A.D.
Wednesday, 04 March 2009 21:24
Forgiveness happens in layers, especially when it is a huge or deep hurt.  We can forgive him, or her, or them and years later a triggering event happens and the old wound resurfaces.
Ezekiel 18:21-28
Psalm 130:1-8

Matthew 5:20-26 For I tell you, unless your righteousness exceeds that of the scribes and Pharisees, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. (21) "You have heard that it was said to the men of old, `You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment.' (22) But I say to you that every one who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, `You fool!' shall be liable to the hell of  fire. (23) So if you are offering your gift at the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, (24) leave your gift there before the altar and go; first be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. (25) Make friends quickly with your accuser, while you are going with him to court, lest your accuser hand you over to the judge, and the judge to the guard, and you be put in prison; (26) truly, I say to you, you will never get out till you have paid the last penny.
Meditation by Joan Lanahan (Creighton)

It is easy to get angry, to let hurtful words fly or commit hurtful actions.  Then we are caught in a web. The psalmist speaks of God: "You do forgive us and for that we revere you ...for it is with Yahweh that mercy is to be found"

God, who loves us unconditionally, can easily forgive us.   We, though made in God's image, have a hard time forgiving one another.  It is really God's grace in us that enables us to forgive. We have heard of huge forgivings.

Remember South Africa's Forgiveness and Reconcilation work after the end of apartheid?  Immaculee Ilibegiza of Rwanda tells a powerful story of horror and forgivenes in "Left to Tell".  Tutsi-s had murdered her parents and brother and thousands of others in 1994.  For 91 days she and 7 other Rwandan women hid in a sheltered bathroom of a Hutu Pastor.  She could hear the murderers of her family searching the Pastor's house looking for her and others.  She felt deep anger and hatred in her heart.  She prayed for hours.  In the darkness, she dug deeply into God within her and found the compassion to forgive them.  It is fitting that she now travels the world telling her story of anger turned to forgiveness through God's love.

Us, and myself, with whom are we, am I angry?  Do we want to forgive?  Or, do we have a need to hold a grudge?  Do we "want to be right or be happy"?  To be happy, I am learning, one has to let go of old angers and forgive. Forgiveness happens in layers, especially when it is a huge or deep hurt.  We can forgive him, or her, or them and years later a triggering event happens and the old wound resurfaces.  Again, we pray to forgive, and it happens---until the next similar hurt.

Our hurts remind us that we are fragile human beings.  We need God's love in our hearts that creates an openness to see and say "I am/was wrong".  We need God's love to open us to forgiving and being forgiven. Is it time to forgive or to ask for forgiveness?  This is Lent.  It is a good time. 
Supplementary Reading
God's Love Can Never Be Lost

"God is love." - 1 John 4:8

Have you ever lost something you treasured? Remember the sick feeling you had thinking you would never see it again? What treasure would guarantee you heartbreak if you lost it? What would you be willing to do to replace it? Maybe it's the diamond in your engagement ring, or a photo of your parents.

Whatever it is-it is nothing compared to the love of Christ. Can you imagine losing his love? Actually, maybe you think you can or have lost his love because of something you did or failed to do. Maybe you fear you lost his love because you didn't spend enough time praying or worshiping God. Or maybe you think you lost his love because you haven't gone to church lately.
The truth is: You can never earn God's love-nor can you ever lose it. What a blessed assurance!
* * *
Be alert to God's love today. Make a list of the many concrete, tangible ways in which you experience God's love in your life.

* * *

Devotions taken from the
"Power for Life Daily Devotional"
PRAY as if everything depended on HIM. ACT as if everything depended on YOU.

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Last Updated on Friday, 06 March 2009 00:21

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"The biggest cause of trouble in the world today is that the stupid people are so sure about things and the intelligent folks are so full of doubts."~~Bertrand Russell