Thank you, Lord, You are merciful to my unrighteousness;
You remember my sins no more;
yet, You don’t forget my works and labors of love.
I am in awe of Your mercy toward me.

Today’s Scripture: Hebrews 8:12 – “For I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.”

I’m sure you have heard the phrase, “Forgive and forget.” I remember being taught this phrase as a child.  I accepted it as the “right” thing to do, and so I tried to do it every time someone offended me, hurt me, wronged me – sometimes successfully; other times, not so much.

As I grew and had many more opportunities to forgive, I rationalized that I can forgive – but forgiveness didn’t mean I had to forget. After all, if I forget, I might be hurt again in the same way. Anyway, do we ever really forget when we’ve been wounded? Also, I had learned forgiveness does not mean trust. Just because I have forgiven someone for hurting me, I didn’t have to trust them. Trust is earned, proven. If forgotten, I may trust my offenders more readily, and that would be foolish on my part, right?

That brings me to another phrase I’d learned: “Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.” Yes, the world has all kinds of phrases that are catchy and resonate with our logic and emotions. However, that doesn’t mean the phrases are scriptural and true. Nonetheless, we embrace these phrases and they become part of our character and dictate our responses toward others.

As I study Hebrews 8:12, I learn that God is merciful to us – even while we are unrighteous; and that God promises to remember our sins and our lawless deeds no more. He forgives us and He forgets our sins – with no requirement of trust being proven by us. God forgives and forgets. If I am to grow in godliness, be more like Him, and be a reflection of Him in the earth, then I must forgive and forget. That is the perfect display of mercy.

Jesus taught we are to forgive our offenders seventy times seven times! He taught we must forgive others so that we would be forgiven. He asked God to forgive those who sinned in ignorance – they knew not what they were doing. We, too, must forgive – no matter what.

God said He will remember our sins and lawless deeds no more. He said our sins would be as far as the east is from west. He said He will pardon us – that our sins will not be found. We, too, must forget the sins of others.

To forgive and forget is NOT an easy task. But it is not an impossibility – unless we choose to make it impossible. To forgive and forget is a choice, a discipline, a gift, and a perfect display of the mercy of God.

Just a little more truth here… Hebrews 6:10 says, “For God is not unjust to forget your work and labor of love which you have shown toward His name, in that you have ministered to the saints, and do minster.”  My Pastor says, “God keeps good records.” Not one act of love we accomplish toward others will go unnoticed by God. He will NEVER forget what we have done for others, the sacrifices we have made, the forgiveness we have given to others.

God promises to remember our sin no more, but He WILL remember our labors of love. How is that possible? Only through Perfect Love – only by Righteous Mercy.

I challenge you this week to forgive those who have wronged you; to remember their sins no more; and to only remember their labors of love. Show others the same mercy God has shown you.

Scripture References: Romans 5:8; 1 John 4:19; Matthew 18:21-22; Matthew 6:142 Peter 1:5-8; Psalm 103:12; Jeremiah 50:20