{Forgive}

21 May

This weekend was spent relaxing in my favorite summer spot:: our back deck.  I can’t tell you how much I enjoy sitting out on the deck; chatting with my roommates, some country music in the background, enjoying the evening air.

This weekend I spent most of my time on the deck in the sun, reading “Real Marriage” by Mark Driscoll. I came across the chapter where Pastor Mark explains what true  forgiveness, like Christ forgives, looks like.  He also explains what forgiveness is NOT.  I was so challenged by what true forgiveness really looks like, I want to share the points he makes about it.

Forgiveness::  Loving despite sin or wrong doings.  Just as God forgives not just undeserving but ill-deserving sinners, we must too.  “Forgive us our sins,  for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.  And lead us not into temptation.”  Luke 11:4  We cannot simply ask God to forgive us of our sins; we must also extend the same forgiveness to others.

1. Forgiveness is NOT denying, approving or diminishing sin that is committed against us::

We cannot say we are find, that it was no big deal, or that since it was in the past, we’ve just moved on.  We must be honest about the reality of the sin if we want the forgiveness to be equally earnest.

2. Forgiveness is NOT naivety::

Naive people are prone to live as if the world were not filled with depraved sinners capable of evil; they often become naive by not really looking at the sinfulness of sin, including their own.  Such people are not forgiving sin as must as they are ignoring it.

3. Forgiveness is NOT enabling sin::

To forgive people is not to remain stuck in their cycle of sin, thus being complicit and enabling their continued transgressions.

4. Forgiveness is NOT waiting for someone to acknowledge sin, apologize, and repent::

The sad truth is that some people will never fully repent, and other never at all. Others we will never see again, or they will die before we hear an apology.  We forgive because it is what God requires and what we need, not because out offenders have apologize.

**I was very convicted with this point.  This is such a challenge not only in a husband-wife relationship, but with family or friends in general!  We are called to forgive, even if we never here a “sorry”…this can be a tough one for some!  If we don’t ever forgive & just harbor the feelings, we build up bitterness & hold a grudge, which in turn- is wrong.  Something to think about… 

5. Forgiveness is NOT forgetting about sin committed against us::

It is actually impossible to completely forget such things.  This is why when God says, “Their sin I will remember no more,” it does not mean that He has no memory, but rather that He continually chooses not to bring it up or keep it in the forefront of His thinking.

6. Forgiveness is NOT dying emotionally and no longer feeling the pain of the transgressions::

Rather, forgiveness allows us to feel the appropriate depth of grievous pain but choose by grace not to be continually paralyzed or defined by it.

7. Forgiveness is NOT a one-time event::

Those who have been sinned against commonly have seasons when they feel afresh the pain of past hurts and have to forgive their transgressors yet again.

8. Forgiveness is NOT reconciliation::

It takes one sinner to repent, and one victim to forgive, but it takes both to reconcile.  Therefore, unless there is both repentance by the sinner and forgiveness by the victim, reconciliation cannot occur, which means the relationship remains continually broken until reconciliation does occur.  Forgiveness is the beginning of potential reconciliation but is not in and of itself reconciliation.  Forgiveness takes a moment.  The trust that reconciliation requires is gained slowly and lost quickly.

 9. Forgiveness is NOT neglecting justice::

God will deal with every sin of every human being justly.

**refer to chapter 5 in Real Marriage by Mark Driscoll for more about forgiveness, repentance & bitterness.

{my ferocious watch dog}

{my sweet Bella girl}

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4 Responses to “{Forgive}”

  1. PennyPincherFashion (@PPFGirl) May 21, 2012 at 11:07 am #

    This is such a great explanation of forgiveness and a beautiful picture of how it should work. I have found (not just in marriage, but throughout my years) it is one of the hardest gifts we can give to another person…but it is also the MOST freeing.

  2. Georgina June 12, 2012 at 2:34 pm #

    I love this post – forgiveness is something so often overlooked because it can be so difficult (until you begin practicing it). I love that you took the time to spotlight such a thorough explanation.

    & adore your little pup! So cute 🙂

  3. Heather July 23, 2012 at 2:15 am #

    These are such great points…but hard to follow through on, for sure. But when we forgive it allows the chains of bitterness and anger to be broken, and that makes life so much more enjoyable. Thanks for sharing! And P.S….your dog is super-cute!

  4. Emily August 11, 2012 at 3:38 am #

    Absolutely LOVE this post. I found your blog via instagram not that long ago and its quickly becoming my favorite read. Its refreshing to find Christian bloggers that I can relate to. Especially as I start my own blog, I hope to incorporate my faith into it. Thanks so much!

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