"Bearing with one another and forgiving each other, whoever has a complaint against anyone;
just as the Lord forgave you, so also should you."
I am so glad the Lord forgives me all the countless times that I am in need of forgiving. Sometimes when our children continue to commit the same sin over&over it becomes more difficult to not become angry with the actions & it becomes more difficult to forgive (and truly mean it).
We probably practice forgiveness more than any other lesson at our house, mostly because we constantly sin against each other. My boys are fighting over a toy, playing too rough causing injury, forgetting the rules, or even trying to be helpful only to cause minor chaos. All of these things can either be sin, and IN all of these situations I have the opportunity to respond. Therefore, I myself am the first to say "please forgive me" at our house, because of all the countless opportunities for me to respond in anger or frustration & not in love.
Can I GIVE forGIVEness? To those I love, sure I can! easy as pie. (SARCASM) Maybe to those that I am acquainted with? (easier, not at all) What about those that I don't even know? (still hard) It almost baffles me how forgiveness seems like an 'easy lesson' until I try to think of the things that I have a hard time forgiving. That list is much longer than I'd like, even though I would quickly respond, "yes, I forgive! I practice that everyday & look how well I'm doing." The truth is that choosing not to harbor anger & bitterness, is a choice. Choosing to pray about something that makes my blood boil & my pulse quicken? Can the Lord help me to daily, choose to forgive rather than continue to be angry? yes. (no one else is in charge of whether or not I can forgive, it is mine alone to extend or not!)
I am a creature who loves resolution. If there is something that is not quite right, I love to approach it & apologize & fix it. But what about those situations where that is just not possible? Or what about those people who hear you & choose to not forgive you? What about the argument where I am right, but I'm the one to have to 'back down'? (Whew, I'm tired already.)
I can take all of those things to the Lord in prayer. Do I always receive the resolution I desire? nope. Unfortunately, that's just how it goes sometimes. But that doesn't mean that I can't trust the Lord to carry that load for me. Even if for some issues it becomes a daily FIGHT for my forgiveness. Don't give up the fight boys, keep trusting that The Lord will make right all wrongs. He is the judge, and I am not.
Lord, thank you for your forgiveness. Thank you for the times in childhood to practice the 'easy' forgiveness for the small things we do to each other. Thank you for the time to learn what childlike forgiveness feels like - lovely resolution! Lord, help me to forgive others like that. Like my boys do (sometimes) and like you do Lord, totally & unreservedly. Amen.