Devotion

When Forgiveness Isn't Granted
So watch yourselves. "If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying, 'I, repent,' you must forgive them.” --- Luke 17:3-4
 
God is Love. I practice daily to demonstrate to my brothers and sisters the love and forgiveness I receive from God. This is the ultimate way to live. However, it is sometimes challenging and even painful in my flesh. But I get it. In God's pure love, matters that would damage His and my relationship don't get stuck there. I sincerely ask for His forgiveness, and He grants His forgiveness to me. If we would do the same toward each other. Forgiveness is a tool of the spirit that we don't use as effectively as we should in love toward others. We are to blame. When people offend us, we are quick to go into zone defense towards them - and we may have just said 'I love you' to them only five minutes earlier. It only takes a moment of resentment to interrupt a lifetime of relationship. Forgiveness is the answer. Forgiveness is found in love. God...is...Love.  When forgiveness isn't granted, the love we so readily speak toward each other isn't t real; it isn't of God. Forgiveness - like love - is the nature quality of God that we are to absorb into our character. We can't  do it alone. We need God's help to be forgiving, and we need each other to experience the closeness we can have when we forgive and let go of matters that tear us apart in the body of Christ. God is ready and waiting to help us break free from the chains of unforgiveness. If God so readily grants His forgiveness to us, shouldn't we do the same to each other?

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