Pastor Mike's thoughts

Thoughts on today's Christian world and how it fits into secular society.

Thursday, March 30, 2006

Forgive Me?

Wow, it sure has been a long and interesting week. Sorry about the lack of "blogging," but work and other things have been keeping me pretty busy. It's a good thing though. The week started out pretty rough, but I was bound and determined to just give it over to the Lord and see what miracles He could perform. As always, everything turned out just fine, and my life didn't collapse in a pile at my feet. I'm sure glad that He forgives me for my lack of faith...:)

So what is forgiveness? It's about REACH. We know that God reached out to us in the most incredible act of forgiveness ever seen when He sent His Son to die on the cross for us. We all see this act and wish we could do the same. Somehow we always seem to fall short when we allow anger and emotions to keep us from forgiving others as we've been forgiven by the blood of Christ. So what's the Bible say about this? Micah 7:19 says He does not retain His anger forever, because He delights in Mercy. He will again have compassion on us, and will subdue our iniquities (New Kings James Version). We should follow His example of letting our anger go and showing others mercy like we've been shown. We all know how easy that is to say, but how hard it is to do. So, how do we do it? Try the REACH method.

R=Recall. Recall the hurt. To heal, you have to admit that you've been hurt or offended. You shouldn't remember the hurt as a victim or accusor, but remember objectively what happened.

E=Empathize. Empathize with the person. Try to understand what the person was going through when the person hurt you. Doing this allows you to relate to the person more which makes it easier to understand their actions.

A=Act. Give an act of forgiveness. Try to remember a time when you hurt someone but they forgave you. Remember specifically what happened and how it felt so you can see yourself giving that gift back to the person who hurt you.

C=Commit. Commit to truly forgive. It's easy to say we forgive, but most of the time we still harbor resentment. If this is the case with you, then pray for the Spirit to cleanse you of anything that may be holding you back. Don't allow the anger or pride to fester into something that will later explode.

H=Hold. Hold on to forgiveness. Remember that there's a difference between remembering the event and experiencing the cold emotions. Don't let the past dictate your future. Allow the act of forgiveness to grow you into a more Christlike example.

Everyone of us at one time or another has been wronged. Can you imagine what it would be like if we dwelled on it forever? It would eat us alive. Sometimes it does. We have to let go and let God. If you're still harboring a grudge, it's holding you back more than the other person. REACH out to them and reconcile. If you truly want to make a diffence in two lives, then forgive someone.

I pray that all of you have the most incredible day of your life today. Be blessed and stay strong in Jesus.

Love ya all,
Pastor Mike


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