“I love the LORD, for he heard my voice; he heard my cry for mercy. Because he turned his ear to me, I will call on him as long as I live.”
God is merciful.
For some of us that is the problem. His mercy attracts us but also repels us. If he can forgive me, and welcome me, then what’s to keep him from forgiving and welcoming my enemy? How can he forgive the person who hurt me so deeply? It isn’t fair.
Some of us are stuck in the attraction/repulsion zone. We know what Jesus said about forgiveness, that to receive it we must give it.
“Matthew 6:12-15 And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.’ For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins. ”
We get stuck right here.
There are 3 things to consider if we find ourselves stuck, needing forgiveness, but unable to forgive.
1. God knows. He knows our hearts. He also knows what happened. He will take us where we are, how we are. We may not be able to forgive today, but once we are God’s he begins to make us new.
2. God will change us from the inside out. The person that enters a relationship with God through Jesus death for them and his resurrection, will be transformed, from the inside out. Hurts will be healed, slowly, sometimes instantly but always persistently he moves to completeness and wholeness and health. We won’t finish our lives, as we Have started them, once we have given control over to God. Like a master carpenter/engineer/builder remodeling a shambled wreck, he restores, renews, rebuilds us.
3. God is infinitely merciful and he is infinitely Just. We find this in Acts; “Acts 17:26-31 From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’ “Therefore since we are God’s offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by human design and skill. In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to everyone by raising him from the dead.” ‘
There is still a day of accounting to come. This will be the day when all things wrong get righted. I don’t know how it will work. I know Jesus has paid for my sins so I will not be punished, but somehow he will make up for wrong that I did. His way of Justice will be as perfect as his way of Mercy. He is infinitely powerful and infinitely creative and solutions are unlimited to him.
Today, please consider surrendering to the great God of mercy and let him begin the process of renewal in you.
(Originally posted 8-24-2017)