Friday, March 25, 2011

What about forgiveness....

I mentioned this in the other blog but will do so again for those who did not read it. Yesterday I was talking to some women when this woman we all know came by.  She is rather crass and mean at times but yesterday she was subdued because she lost a friend this past weekend. She was with him when he died and I expressed my condolences.  I waited for the others with me to say something to her and the friend that was with her.  They said nothing.  They just looked rather smug and glanced away.  As they walked away, the womans friend said, 'See how 'Christian' they are.'

Once those two were out of sight, my friends lashed at me for saying anything to her. I simply told them I felt sorry for her and felt it was the right thing to do.  They felt otherwise and reminded me of all the nasty things she had said to them at times. Yes, she did say nasty things but I did not think that I had to stoop to that level.  Besides, I felt that as a Christian it was up to me to try and overlook some of the bad things she said and show her I felt sympathy for her and what she was going thru.  I looked at the women I was with and said, 'I said what I had to say and I do not regret it'.

I think those women I was with missed a chance to witness to two women who do not believe and show them what being a Christian is.  Are we not to forgive those who trespass against us? If we believe what is in the Lord's Prayer, He tells us we are to do that.

There are days when I wish I could hold a grudge against all who have wronged me. I would have a great excuse for venting day after day about all the wrongs that have been heaped up on me but who does that  hurt?  It hurts me because the person I feel that way about may not even care that I am mad or frustrated so I refuse to go with the flow in such an instance.  As a matter of fact, my God tells me to forgive.....

    Colossians 3:13 Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (NIV)
Forgiving does not mean you have to have them over for Sunday dinner or be extra nice to them.  It simply means to let bygones be bygones and move on.

Forgiveness is not part of human nature so we must learn to forgive by faith and many people find that so hard to do.  

How many know the story of Corri Ten Boom?   She and her family were taken prisoners by the Nazis for helping the Jews in Amsterdam. Corrie and her sister Betsie were placed in a prison camp.   Betsie died while in the camp.  Corri's life there was terrible and the Nazis did terrible things to all who were there.  She could have spent her life hating them.  Instead, she forgave them.

"Forgiveness is to set a prisoner free, and to realize the prisoner was you." is what Corri said.  She was right.

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