70x 7 (Matthew 18: 21-22) - (Forgiveness isn't always easy, but it is necessary)
“Then Peter came to him and asked, “Lord, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?”
“No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven.”
(Matthew 18: 21-22)
Why should I forgive this him or her? They never see their wrongs so they never apologize, and they keep doing it. I am hurt repeatedly from this person with a less than kind nature. I have tried everything to communicate and make peace, but nothing works. They don’t deserve it… Well, we didn’t either, but Christ did it for us. Christ cancelled our debts and we must forgive those whom sinned against us. We need not worry about someone else and have faith that God has everything under control. No matter how hard we try to make someone see something, first look at your own mistakes and bring it forth and deal with it. Then, when addressing forgiveness for someone else, remember God is the only one that can change someone’s heart and transform him or her. It is not our place or judgment in what is right or wrong or what should be done no matter how we feel. God is our fair judge. We all fall short and God is on the receiving end of all of our failure yet he forgives us and lets us keep trying.
Think about how many times we have made mistakes (sinned) or even more so continue to make the same mistakes over and over (a definite need for repentance). God still forgives us. More simply put, as a mother I have a natural LOVE for my boys and duty to raise them into good Christian (my choice) men with a good moral compass. I need to guide and correct them as well. When they make mistakes or do something wrong, I have to discipline (correct them), guide them (show them a better choice/path), and teach them (The Word) so they grow in wisdom and then follow up with understanding and love. We forgive our children and continue loving them unconditionally and keep teaching them to grow into amazing, loving, compassionate, and successful adults no matter how many times we need to redirect them. We do it because we love them. NOW, think about this, God is OUR Father, and we are his children. Think about ALL of our mistakes that we make (that we are aware of or not, big or small) every single day and how many times he forgives us. We mess up constantly, but he still love us. How many times have I prayed and said: God, I am so sorry, I can’t believe I did it again. I thought that I could do better, and he still forgives me. We are guided by The Word and the example Christ set for us. I can only be corrected when I ask him to help me. I can only forgive when he helps me to and we know it is not always easy.
THINK ABOUT this: When someone really hurts us and sins against us we don’t want to even have him or her around, how are we suppose to forgive them especially when they don’t care and keep hurting us? We are so quick to remain angry and hurt that we lose focus on God and we fester on what we want someone to do for us to move on and be happy. Now, WHAT IF GOD did that? What if he said, forget it, they are hopeless, and I am tired of forgiving them. I forgave them for the last time! Well, he loves us and that isn’t the case. As hard as it may be we need to forgive others, for us to feel free and be happy as Jesus cancelled our debt, we must forgive others as he does. When we hold on to bitterness we let that person control us. We don’t have to carry that stress. Let go and let God.
God takes care of justice. Thoughts of how can this person constantly test ones faith, keep harm in ones life, keep hurting people, lying, and/or repeating this or that… then I was reminded of this scripture.
“The one who is taught the word is to share all good things with the one who teaches him. Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap. For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life. Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary. So then, while we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, and especially to those who are of the household of the faith.” Galatian 6:6-10
I have faith that God always works things out and we need to focus on him. We need to forgive other like we have been forgiven. If we hang on to bitterness and don’t forgive, we really are not displaying love for others. Love is most important and part of loving, is forgiving.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”
"'Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?' Jesus said to him, '"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind." This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: "You shall love your neighbor as yourself"'" (Matthew 22:36-39).