Oh, I understand that our example is Christ…and that the standard is high…and that our motives are to be pure. But it needs to be repeated again and again and again: Christians are not perfect, just forgiven.
The word forgiveness draws various reactions. If we’re talking about God’s forgiveness of us, it can be a soothing topic resulting in gratitude and peace. If we need to seek forgiveness from someone we’ve wronged, we might wrangle a bit with our pride before we finally approach that person in humility—but our resulting cleared conscience makes it well worth the effort.
Usually, however, the most uncomfortable kind of forgiveness is what we must extend to someone who has wronged us or hurt us deeply. The Bible says a lot about this kind of forgiveness—perhaps because our emotions arm wrestle with it and other lingering memories skirmish with it. It’s really hard to do.
Find out what God’s Word says about forgiveness, how essential it is to understand, and how to actually do it...if we want to grow in our walk with God.
Our habit of looking back in life’s rear-view mirror can put us on a collision course. We can lose sight of God’s steadfast grip in our life.
“Have I lost my salvation? Does God still love me even though I'm doing everything wrong? And where do I go from here? I don't know what to do.”
Christians since the first century have been tempted to trade grace for a life directed by strict law and high-minded requirement. The Apostle Paul addressed the Galatian church on this very issue, warning them against trading God’s Gospel for a different, human-made gospel. As we hear the word to the Galatians, keeping our message grounded in grace will help our lives exude grace.
A wandering mind drove King David to distraction and became more than he could bear. But his multiple sins refused to stay silent. No struggle is more relentless than sin…especially unconfessed sin. Let’s take a close look at David’s response to his sin and gain some insight for our own lives about God’s blessed gift of forgiveness.
When I was about eight I stole something. This event ranks as one of the top 10 of all my childhood memories, right up there with nearly drowning. I remember it so clearly.
Being compassionate or not is all about what you look at and see. The fact that we don't like seeing pain makes compassion difficult, but compassion only occurs in the context of another's pain.
Looking back more than 60 years, I've learned a valuable lesson: when people are hurting, they need much more than an accurate analysis and a quick diagnosis. More than professional advice.
But it was like something out of a horror movie at first. Then I thought, Well, make the most of it. So I did. Sometimes the only thing I can control is my outlook. My response. This was definitely one of those times.