Lord, Your care for me abounds beyond all understanding!
Your forgiveness, patience and steadfast love are unstoppable.
You’ve cancelled my debt, given me a clean slate…
Series: “Eyes to See and Ears to Hear”
Forgiveness might be one of the toughest topics to fully understand. Whether you are a Christ follower, or not, we all need a better picture of this subject. Not that we can’t grasp the idea of what it “is,” but that we might have trouble with the actual act of “doing” it. Even on my best day, I can struggle with letting go of my right to be right. My feelings get hurt. Maybe I don’t understand the motive behind something someone says. Words and actions flare up and then before you know it, it happens…broken relationships. Heartache and turmoil enter our lives when we never meant to invite them in. Time goes on and restoration never comes. Why? Was the debt too high to pay? Too hard to forgive? Too painful to release? What stops us from offering others or receiving from them a clean slate? I don’t have all the answers, but Jesus does. He knows exactly how high the price of forgiveness is. The question is, do we understand the price?
Let’s check out this parable to gain some understanding:
“A certain moneylender had two debtors. One owed five hundred denarii, and the other fifty. When they could not pay, he cancelled the debt of both. Now which of them will love him more?” Simon answered, “The one, I suppose, for whom he cancelled the larger debt.” And he said to him, “You have judged rightly.” Then turning toward the woman he said to Simon, “Do you see this woman? I entered your house; you gave me no water for my feet, but she has wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You gave me no kiss, but from the time I came in she has not ceased to kiss my feet. You did not anoint my head with oil, but she has anointed my feet with ointment. Therefore I tell you, her sins, which are many, are forgiven—for she loved much.
But he who is forgiven little, loves little.” (Luke 7:41-47)
Have you wrestled with your own ability to receive forgiveness from someone you know you have wronged? Someone you owe? Do we see our need for forgiveness? After all, who enjoys being at the mercy of a creditor? Who relishes the feeling of being indebted to someone else? Even our Heavenly Father? Are you currently struggling to receive the gift of grace or mercy from God? It might seem impossible to think that we would have trouble receiving this gift. But to receive it, we have to come to terms that we NEED it…and that is the hard part. The realization that we are sinners, debtors who may not be able to pay what we owe because it would mean our life. And what about God? Can He be trusted with our deepest regrets, our sins, the areas we know we fall short?
How can I be sure His love will cover me? After all, people may not have not shown me this grace. People may not forgive me. Many people will move on with their lives as if I am not worth forgiving. My only Hope is Jesus. My walk is one of faith. It takes a full awareness of who God is. I can’t tell you the moment I became deeply aware of my need for Him, but I know He showed up. I know that He lifted my head and said, “You my daughter, are forgiven and free.” So I rejoice with the woman whose sins were many…I was that woman. God redeems when man cannot. God makes us new, man cannot. God knows the price of forgiveness, and I know just how high it was. My debt is paid.
Thank you Jesus, for giving me a clean slate when no one else would have.
Holding Fast to Hope,