This Saturday, April 30th at 9am, I am holding a session at Webster Recreation Center on Forgiveness. It’s a big topic, messy and complex. The issues in people’s lives where a need to forgive is the pathway to healing, is so varied, certainly there is no quick and instant formula that applies to all. There is a path though led by Christ. He longs to lead each one by His vision, not our own.
His vision has clear sight into broken nature. Scripture says because of what He saw; He would not find his confidence in people, John 2:23-25. Seeing as He saw and not putting confidence in people is a golden key unlocking the path to walking in the life of forgiveness which is Christ himself.
Key #1- Seeing as He sees. You are broken and so is everyone else, so don’t place your self-worth on your self-assessment or on anyone else’s assessment, whether it be praise or criticism.
There have been a handful of situations in my life and in the lives of others with whom I’ve prayed that I’ve learned the necessity to seek out what God sees. I now ALWAYS ask for His perspective. It doesn’t always come immediately, so I keep asking until the answer comes.
I was married once; and was it not for God helping me see what He saw, I would have stayed. I was not in my right mind when it came to “love”. God knew this; and He reached in to heal. This situation was my first big lesson about engaging with spiritual weapons. I had only been a Christian for a couple of years. Fasting, prayer, scripture and worship were essential components to hear from God on what was real and what was a lie. God confirmed what He was telling me by speaking the same message in Christian counseling sessions, bible study, asking for prayer, steps of obedience, and through the spiritual authority of my pastor. Additionally and most especially, the LORD stepped in with His power. He did amazing things to reveal lies and show me truth. God made it clear that I was following His will to leave a situation of serial infidelity by someone who would not repent. I was able to forgive in this situation because God kept the emphasis on choices of will. One form of forgiveness in this situation was letting someone else go on as they were, but I was to go on with Christ.
Seeing as Christ sees also was necessary for forgiveness to be transacted between God and my self-destructive choices. In order for me to heal, He first showed me, in that marriage, I was worshipping an idol in the form of a human. Christian psychologist Larry Crabb describes idols as, “things that we legitimately want becoming more important than knowing and trusting and following God...” In the conviction, the LORD affirmed there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus and showered amazing mercy on me. Though I got myself into the trouble, by repentance, confession and surrender worshipping God above all, He delivered me out of the stronghold.
Seeing as God sees reveals these strongholds that block our path to forgiveness. I was absolutely blinded to that idol until God revealed it.
KEY #2- Being able to hear the affirming words of Christ is another golden key to walk in forgiveness and love from the life of Christ… who is Himself forgiveness, Ephesians 1:7.
We must be like Christ, who did not find his sense of confidence and self from others. Whether parents, a spouse, an employer, often their opinion of us is our stronghold. Their criticisms, demands, and rejection, or praise is the basis of our self-assessing thoughts corrupting our perception of God and ourselves. Our sense of self is rooted in the lies of false affirmers who have no power to put supernatural life in us. We need to be able to see as God sees and transact Christ’s supernatural life in us. Are you open to Him showing you areas where you are living in a human stronghold? He must become your supernatural stronghold, Psalm 18:2.
The very first place to yield who we really are and receive acceptance is with God. If you have never done that, you are missing out on a huge measure of the only love with power to supernaturally transform you. If you are seeking acceptance from anyone else first, this is out of order to the first commandment that puts life in order, Deuteronomy 6:5. Voices other than God’s are skewed and imperfect. Jesus operated from this truth. It can’t be repeated too often, the Savior of the world saw broken nature and did not entrust Himself to others.
John 2:24-25, the Amplified version says, “But Jesus [for his part] did not trust Himself to them, because He knew all [men]; and He did not need anyone to bear witness concerning man [needed no evidence from anyone about men], for He Himself knew what was in human nature. [He could read men’s hearts.] [see also 1 Samuel 16:7].
In the above setting, were they yelling at Him and accusing Him? No, they were praising him, many believing in Him because of the miracles He did in their midst- John 2:23. But He could see that selfish demands and unreasonable expectations were behind their praise. He knew not to find confidence in their accolades because it was a trap. Is your value rooted in the assessments of a parent, a spouse, an employer, a mentor, a close relationship? Is your need to forgive tied to a person whose words or actions leave you feeling unworthy, unloved, unredeemable, a failure?
Your value isn’t determined by the assessment of others. You died, and your life is now hidden in Christ with God, Colossians 3:3.
Jesus started ministry, continued in ministry, and finished ministry confident of the Father’s love for him. Forgiveness himself, he did not entrust himself to anyone but His Father.
The first words we hear from Jesus as a young man are about His deep need for His Heavenly father, NOT his earthly one. To his parents he says, “Why were you searching for me? Didn’t you know I had to be in my Father’s house?”- Luke 2:49.
The first words we hear from the Father was at Christ’s baptism. Heavenly Father publicly inaugurated Christ, “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.” – Luke 3:22
God the Father speaks affirming words of His Son again, interrupting Peter’s nervous chatter on the mount of transfiguration, clarifying Christ supremacy above all others. “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!” – Matthew 17:5
This week I was in a few situations praying with men. I asked each one whether or not they could hear the affirming words of their Heavenly Father. All admitted struggle. In some, immediate emotion welled up in their eyes just hearing the question. It revealed a deep and personal need and a soul God longs to affirm. But there is a block. The internal voice with all its arguments and lies is often too loud and obnoxiously blocking the affirming voice of their Heavenly Father.
With these 2 keys, 1) seeing as He sees and 2) hearing His affirming voice, we can forgive and be forgiven. We can live through His supernatural life, not our flesh-based, broken nature.
Here is a practical example. A prayer partner and I brought similar hurts to God. As we discussed what God was telling us, we realized He was taking us through a similar process of forgiveness. The first thing He did was console and validated our feelings. Then He started to whisper, “Forgive.” We both had similar reactions to our situations. “Why should I? They haven't apologized or changed their obnoxious behavior.” Instead of leading us to cut and run, He gave insight on what was going on in the other person. In our separate situations, God was letting us know that “the offender” was reacting from a broken place within and not to take it personal because it wasn’t about us. These people were lashing out because of how they felt about themselves. Their internal voice was not one of affirming words from the Father; but words based upon lies of self-loathing and shame. This insight diffused our feelings of personal rejection. Their words lost power because they were revealed as a strategy they use to block anyone from getting closer. It’s a smoke screen. God saw it, we didn't.
God helped us see the soul cries of “the offenders”. He's done it many times since. He also repeatedly reminds of our own need for forgiveness. Assistance from on High helps release expectation, stay in relationship, know how to intercede, and represent Christ to people again. We were to continue to express grace in terms “the offenders” didn’t deserve. This reveals Christ, Salvation himself. In my friend’s situation, her obedience to keep risking and keep forgiving saved her marriage.
Your pain transcends you. It has divine purpose. It’s not about you, that would be such a small story. It’s about a Savior’s heart seeing all people across all span of time need redemption. He saw misfits needing to be adopted and loved and made His own. So He became forgiveness, your adoption papers sealed with his own blood.
Again quoting Larry Crabb from his book Soul Talk, “We cannot experience the love and joy of real life until we’re connected to another at the level of our soul. We cannot know the freedom to be who we truly are until we yield who we really are to another and experience that person’s acceptance. We cannot move into our world with other-centered energy and noble purpose as long as we remain alone- unknown, unexplored, undiscovered, and untouched. The life of God is not pouring out of us into others. We rarely speak with power into a person’s life. Or, if we do, it’s divisive power, destructive power. But it could be different.”
When you grow in your ability to hear the affirming words of the Father, and to see yourself and others they way He sees, you become a vessel He uses to speak words of life to people.
Yield first to God, the master affirmer. See as He sees, hear Him affirming and forgiving you! Learn to speak words of life to people. A few spots are left, come to Saturday’s session if you struggle with forgiving yourself, others, or God. He is the Way to forgiveness. Blessings!
“Wait” may be one of the most stressful four letter words that exists. What does God mean that we wait?
Recently I was sweetly surprised overhearing a little girl around 4 years old asking her father for something. I could not see her; but didn’t need to because her voice revealed everything. Her father was interacting with a cashier; but his daughter was in her own world. She had some sweet dream forming. With those thoughts came words and action, intent on turning her father’s attention to her. The lilt of her little girl voice, the longing and urgency in her request, the innocence of her question quickly revealed the desire of her heart. With a product display separating us, I could only tune to what she was beginning to whisper. I pictured her at her father’s leg, looking up at him wide-eyed, taking her little hand, tapping him softly on the thigh to get his gaze to look down on her. She kept her tone soft and gentle; she sounded a little shy as she revealed a secret longing. Her heart poured forth, “Daddy, daddy… will you marry me? Daddy, will you marry me? Daddy, will you marry me?”
She got his attention. I didn’t hear his answer; but my ear heard her response. The sound wave of her giggle traveled from counter level up. He must have scooped her up into his arms. How sweet for a father to hear his daughter imagining him as her safest place forever…
What if this father turned to her and said, “I’m sorry you have to wait. You can’t marry me; you have to wait for a long time before you can get married.”
W-A-I-T. We hate that answer. It’s a four letter word to us often, releasing a stench of offense and frustration in just a few prayer closets.
Yet only if we embraced waiting. There is treasure there. HE is there.
At the Psalm 23 meditation on February 19th, two people have told me that the Holy Spirit gave them a living image of Jesus’ face during the session. One saw the LORD joyous and laughing, the other saw him coming towards her and looking at her with deep love, affirming He sees her, affirming she is His! Just like the little girl wanting her father’s attention, both were deeply touched because his gaze met their soul and revived it.
Psalm 62:5 My soul, wait thou only upon God; for my expectation is from him.
God designed waiting to be based upon expectation and anticipation of HIS intervention. The truest and best type of waiting ties God to the outcome, expecting His deliverance and help. God is the answer in waiting. We are not to be ticking off time apart from resting in Him. Just like the father who didn’t want to crush the heart of his little girl’s request, God longs to scoop us up and be what satisfies us in the waiting.
Not to be missed, when it comes to waiting, God's action is the answer. It is not idle in physical action; but it is idle in soul worry, soul panic, soul fear, soul demand, and self-motive. This is not simple for us. Internally, we rev up pretty easy, our thoughts on the wheel; our calculating on the gas pedal, our prayer language filled with harsh sounds of revved engines stuck in park. But God intends we shift into “soul” idle and let Him power us forward by His Spirit. This is not some ethereal idea. It is very practical and necessary. It is where the peace that surpasses understanding is obtained, Philippians 4:4-7.
One of the women I referenced above came to February’s Psalm 23 meditation with a real need to know that God was with her and her husband in a major life decision. This is what she says after attending,
“Psalm 23 has long been a favorite. The Psalm emphasizes my Lord’s goodness and His sufficiency to care for His own. To enter into a meditation on this psalm with others in praise and honor seeking His face was an opportunity not to be missed. I felt I wanted to honor and express my want to draw closer to Him. At the same time seeking His will and provision for our move to Kentucky. Our faithful Lord answered my petitions in a wonderful way, being true to His promises in Psalm 23.”
Do you hear the love language of her heart? Does it appear she respects and honors God? Does it seem that she anticipates and expects God’s intervention? Did she experience His presence? Is she full of praise and thankfulness? Does she claim God’s Word as the promises on which her soul can be powered forward by His help and deliverance?
Joanna’s view of God reminds me of the little girl with sweet dreams forming in her heart. She is one seeking her Heavenly Father’s attention, not just His handout. She is calmed by being in His safe embrace, married to him forever. God scooped her up and calmed her without words. He revealed His joy filled face. She got the Father's attention. She goes forward knowing He is there. Her soul shifted to idle, powered forward by faith in Christ. Talk to her and she’ll detail how she has freshly experienced God's intervention and provision for their unexpected move, filling them with awe and wonder!
The encouragement is to be childlike with God. Humble yourself as a child and enter, Matthew 18:3. Enter the LORD’s throne room, Hebrews 4:16. Wait with expectation in HIS intervention. He is near. He is near to all who call on him in truth, Psalm 145:18. Please consider waiting in His presence by attending either Saturday April 30th or Saturday May 14th. He is faithful to meet you! Go to the calendar page to sign up- http://www.intothewaters.com/calendar.html
Who do I think I am to lead people in prayer and just go out into the community and minister? I’ve been challenged by these doubts, on and off over the last 6 months. Challenges have come from a few different angles and conversations. Challenges that have left me asking myself, “What am I doing?”
How has He handled me when I’ve spun like a top in doubt and fear? He redirects and reframes what I am looking at and who I am listening to.
For dealing with arrows of doubt being launched my way, He has given simple responses along the lines of, “Human thought, pay no attention; keep going.” He’s been matter-of-fact; and, I’ve increasingly noticed, He never panders to doubt.
He has grounded me to scripture, reminding me of Peter and John. He has assured me it is fine to be ordinary and unschooled, as long as it stays evident I spend time with Him and reflect Him, Acts 4:13. He has reminded me of Paul and that it's okay to be nervous and fearful and stumble in my words, 1 Corinthians 2:3-5.
This is a simple lesson about the character and love of God to be with us for each stage of our need and growth. He is faithful. He will reframe our reality based upon His perception and power.
REFRAMING is absolutely necessary, because very often WE ARE WRONG. He has to tear down a flawed framework built on an intricate web of lies mixed with truth.
Reframing is how He has gently led me through countless situations requiring I forgive. Reframing is a supernatural shift in thinking. It’s the miraculous gift mentioned in Romans 12:2, Heaven sent with God’s thoughts. Reframing is a key survival skill, as long as it is based upon God’s perspective and Christ’s life. (Note: Reframing and releasing is the model of the meditation on forgiveness on April 30th. We will go through some scripture about forgiveness. We walk through questions to pinpoint issues. We’ll ask for the Holy Spirit’s help to reframe them, and practice exercises to release the issues into His hand. Sign up on the calendar page.)
Last week I was at a point when I had to make a decision about going forward in this ministry call, either I am in, or I am out. I was in prayer lamenting about it when in my spirit I heard, “Get out of the boat.” I was dumbfounded. “I’m not out of the boat yet?!!!” The answer was no.
I thought I was out of the boat already! I WAS WRONG. He reframed; and let me know I was still in the boat. Why was this important? I needed to see as He saw. Up to this point, I’ve found strength through reason and ability to calculate resources. But now I’m approaching the time of calculation, when it will be all God. He wanted to clarify that I’ve been looking with more human perception than I realized. It blew my mind; but redirected me and reframed my key to survival. Christ will not be revealed in greater measure to me or others if I stay grounded in the natural. It's a call to get out of the boat and stand where I don’t have human ability to save myself, Matthew 14:28.
We talk about God doing the impossible. We quote God’s response to Abraham, “Is anything too hard for the LORD…?” We quote Jesus, “… with God all things are possible.” We sing, “Call me out on to the waters, the great unknown where feet may fail…” But when the rubber meets the road in our lives, sometime He shows us the end point of our trust in God. He has to ask multiple times in multiple ways, “Do you love me?” He has to yank out deep roots tied to an intellectual system of processing through logic. “I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” (1 Corinthians 1:19)
Christ trusted His Heavenly Father’s power to resurrect him from the grave. He didn’t rely on limits of human ability to execute his call. Can you imagine if He started out this way? Instead of miraculously manifesting 120-180 gallons of wine at the wedding in Cana, perhaps He would have suggested making tea or lemonade. He would have put a compress on the forehead of Peter’s mother-in-law to heal her fever. Of course this is ridiculous. We certainly wouldn’t be following Jesus 2000+ years later if He attempted to reveal himself through limits of human reasoning and accessible resources.
Christ admittedly did nothing on his own, John 8:28. He prioritized time with His Father in prayer. He didn’t operate alone. He was led by instruction from Heaven, Luke 6:12, Mark 1:35. He didn't make his own decisions.
Are you operating alone? Are you filled with the knowledge of His will through all the wisdom and understanding that the HOLY SPIRIT gives (Colossians 1:9)? Where are you stuck mentally processing within your own limited reasoning? Are you receiving perspective from God's thoughts that challenge you and fill you with Christ's peace and love?
Where are you fixing your eyes? Are you more like Eve who desired what her eyes saw or are you more like the man who cried out to Jesus, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!”
Hebrews 12:2- fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.
Watchman Nee wrote in his book Release of the Spirit, “It takes many breakings in many areas of our lives for us to attain to a place of usefulness… Our spirit is released according to the degree of our brokenness… Spiritual sensitivity comes about only through many dealings. Are we really profited if we preserve ourselves? ‘For whosoever shall save his life shall lose it.’ We must ask the Lord not to withdraw His hand from us. How tragic not to recognize what the Lord is doing…”
This is the power of God reframing our thoughts, feelings, and circumstances. We will recognize more clearly what He is doing and how we are intricately knit into His redemptive work while temporarily trapped in this thing called time. He will continually reassure us that we are not alone. We are comforted by His presence. We will get out of the boat.
Bring your reasoning and emotion to Him in prayer; learn how to tune to His voice. Let him redirect your thoughts and reframe them from His perspective. Please come to either the April 30th meditation on Forgiveness or the May 14th meditation on Psalm 23. Go to the CALENDAR page to sign up! FINAL NOTE: Have these blogs been a blessing to you? There is a new page under the "More" tab called "Ministry Offering". Would you be open to seeding into the ministry? Yes right now, it is a love offering. Steps are going forward to form as a non-profit. Help is needed in the transitional period. If you follow this link, you can see simple ways to keep ministry going and help the Lord reach people beyond my current contacts. I appreciate your help! Blessings upon cheerful givers!
Thank you for your responses to last week’s blog post on forgiveness. I got quite a few reactions. I very much appreciate you letting me know how much it spoke to you!
We ARE struggling in managing relationships, especially when they take unexpected turns to disappointment and heartache. We wrestle don’t we, to release outcomes to God, to let go of reciprocal expectations based upon our relational investment?
Internal turmoil takes up mental space and consumes our time alone. We independently process the problem, review the issue, strategize next steps, and stew. Sometimes we stew for years, consciously and even unconsciously. Too often we do this alone, without God in the process.
He sees the all-consuming internal review draining our life energy. He knows we need to be stilled inside. He sees the block inside. But it takes initiative on our part.
Jesus still says, “Do you want to get well?” See John 5:6.
Christ still asks, “What do you want me to do for you?” See Luke 18:41.
It takes responding to Christ’s invitation, “Come to me all who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest.” Do you believe that promise?
Here is how King David describes the result of time with the LORD-
AMP VERSION- Psalm 131:2- Surely I have calmed and quieted my soul;
Like a weaned child [resting] with his mother,
My soul is like a weaned child within me [composed and freed from discontent].
Is this how you would describe the outcomes of your time with God, composed and freed from discontent? King David took initiative to go into the presence of God to calm and quiet himself. He had learned to trust and hope in God. Time in the Lord’s presence is the prescription to still the uprisings of our souls. Christ is always saying, “Come to ME.” But do we come?
It’s critical really. Those offenses we are rehearsing, the blame we cast on God, the fears eating us up, the anger consuming us, and the damaging belief systems we follow need to be transformed. Our human perceptions, flesh nature, and mental processing need to be reframed. We need access to His perspective and supernatural power. This is the beauty of time in His presence. It’s not just a one way earth-to-Heaven exchange; but a two-way exchange, you and He communing in His throne room (Ephesians 2:6, Hebrews 4:16).
We as Christians are seated in Heavenly places, but how earthly ground is our prayer life? Are your thoughts of human origin or divine counsel, Isaiah 55:6-8?
This is why I am doing meditation sessions. I know He wants extended time with you. I feel called to create settings that help you let go and be led into His presence. It is a discipline to practice, it’s a blessing that transforms. He knows how we struggle to spend extended time in prayer.
He wants to help. We need the help.
He has to show us where our human capacity to love Him and others is self-based. He has to search out what is in our hearts. He has to search out where hope has died within us. Often He has to tell us what we are feeling. Many times I've had to ask Him, "What is my problem right now?" He has been faithful to bubble up to the surface that which I could not access through my own reasoning or understanding. Sometimes its due to a block, sometimes I can't access my own feelings. God's help brings moments of breakthrough. It's these personal touches that lead to falling deeply in love with the Savior!
When we take initiative to go in to the secret place, He gives us what we do not have on our own. Time in His presence and hearing his Word is critical for this supernatural transformation. Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God, Romans 10:17.
If Jesus prioritized extended time with His Father in prayer, how much more is it necessary for you and me? It’s the only way to love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, all your strength. We don’t prioritize those or love very deeply those we don’t spend time with. We don't follow leadership we don't respect. We won't take risks for God without heartfelt cries based on trust, transacted through obedience and surrender.
“Not my will be done, but your will Father.”
Hebrews 5: 7-9 During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with fervent cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission. Son though he was, he learned obedience from what he suffered and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him.
God is love. Jesus is God and He let go... Christ gave up his spirit in obedience to the Father’s will. Now He is the theme of our praise in the sanctuary, now our hearts can live forever, Psalm 22:25-26!
Come spend time at His feet. HE is worthy. Practice tuning to His thoughts. Let Him reframe your internal processing. Come be renewed in His presence. You have 2 opportunities coming up. I will be doing the Psalm 23 meditation again as well as holding a new session on Forgiveness.
On Saturday April 30th, I will be holding a session on forgiving and letting go at the Webster Community Center, meeting room 302. The session will start at 9:15am and will go to around 11:00am if you stay for extended worship or personal prayer. Session limited to 15, sign up on the calendar page!
On Saturday May 14th, at the Webster Community Center, Room 302, I will be holding the Psalm 23 session again. This is the first session I held on February 19th and it was very well received! The May 14th session for Psalm 23 will also start at 9:15am and go to around 11:00am if you stay for extended worship or personal prayer. Session limited to 15, sign up for Option #2 Psalm 23 ALSO found on the CALENDAR PAGE!
These efforts are in response to my obedience to the LORD to be a local missionary as an intercessor and minister of prayer. Please contact me via email if you are interested in learning about how to support this new ministry- email@example.com
Forgive. Starting last year, this is a word that began to pop into my spirit as I’ve been praying for people. It has caught my attention because this began when I was praying for people with requests for relief from physical maladies. As I heard it, I would stop and say something like, "I keep hearing 'forgive'. Is there someone or something you need to release?" The answers included a long pause and a wordless stare. Without exception they all have answered, "Yes". Our Heavenly Physician is often more interested in relieving and touching the state of our heart first, indicative perhaps of knowing this is the way to relieve physical pain.
Of late too, as I have been ministering in the meditative sessions, the LORD has been whispering “forgive” again. I am getting the same response; people are immediately connecting with a situation where forgiveness is needed. Sometimes they know they are not forgiving themselves; and sometimes they know it’s about someone or something else.
God’s heart is revealed in those whispers. He has always known forgiveness is the path for true healing and love. It is the central message for eternal salvation; it is the message of the cross. For us in our prayer life with God, it is essential to pay attention to his whispers to forgive. If we ignore it, we are setting up a block internally, maybe even one that will manifest physically or externally through chaotic life. Not forgiving can become a bitter root within that defiles many (Hebrews 12:15). Not forgiving can also lead us into a type of jail sentence.
I remember a situation where I was often rehearsing an offense. It was holding me captive, torturing me internally and coming out through my mood physically. After a good length of time had gone by, the LORD spoke to me about it. He took me to Matthew 18:21-35 and impressed on my heart, in a quite matter of fact way, “You are exacting a price on their behavior.” I still have the note in my Bible. He worked with me on it. He helped me mourn what I was stuffing and letting eat me alive. But the process didn’t stop there. There were actions I had to take. I obeyed and I took them. It brought freedom and healing.
The taking action part is where many stall in the process of forgiveness. We don’t take action; we either stay stuck rehearsing our pain or stuck in confusion on how to forgive.
Forgive is a verb. This is extremely important to acknowledge. It requires taking action, not just speaking words. Ultimately our actions will give credence to or disprove our words. Jesus did not merely say, “Your sins are forgiven.” He willing gave up his spirit, Matthew 27:50. Everything Christ said, He followed up with action. He did not just say He loved the world; His actions gave irrefutable evidence of His love. His act of forgiveness turned hearts of stone into hearts of flesh (Ezekiel 11:19). By His Spirit in us, this is our divine access to forgiveness. Who can forgive sins but God alone?
Jesus said there will be a time when many will turn from the faith, betray and hate each other, that a time is coming (due to an increase of wickedness) when the love of most will grow cold (Matthew 24:9-14). Not forgiving is a path to love growing cold.
What do you think is the most common contextual meaning for the word ‘forgive’ in the New Testament? If you were to choose between the 2 descriptions below, which is more commonly used; 1 or 2?
The answer is #1. Interestingly, aphiēmi is translated as "forgive" 47 times and ALSO as “leave” 52 times, “let alone” 6 times, and “forsake” 6 times. Sending away, permitting, giving up, leaving, going away...
For #2 above, charizomai is only translated as "forgive" 11 times.
So the majority of the time, within the context of scripture, the word forgive is tied to an action of leaving, giving up, keeping no longer, not hindering, departing from one, leaving something or someone behind. Does this surprise you?
What is it that God doesn't want you to hold on to any longer? In what ways is He allowing you to walk away from a situation? What is He asking you to lay down, leave behind? Based upon examples Jesus taught in the Gospel accounts, He could very well be saying, "Let go. Let the person continue on as they are. Give it to Me. Release it. Go in a different direction. Follow Me, not them." This is key... follow Jesus. His is the path of forgiveness.
Meditating on some key scripture situations related to forgiving will be the content of the next meditation session toward the end of April. I will be posting the details on the calendar page next week.
Do you need help understanding a step God is asking you to take to forgive yourself or someone else? Do you need prayer? These are good reasons to attend the next meditative prayer session. We will spend time with God letting him search within and seek His help on how to act out the command to forgive.
I pray you stay in tune with God’s whispers. May you be cultivating your prayer life, investing your time with God to stay tuned to the state of your own soul. God is love and love never fails. He won't fail you.
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Prayer is Gift!
Hi my name is Gina; and I'm the founder of the ministry. My 25 year journey with God has been centered on immersing myself in the safe relationship God offers, learning about the power of surrender, and praying for His life in greater measure!