Two words have been weighing heavy on me this week: forgiveness and grace.
Both of these words require that I think outside of myself; outside of my hurts, my grievances, my wants, my humanness.
Forgiveness is a struggle. I let it go, then I pull it back and add more offenses to the list. Of course, then it’s back to the beginning for forgiveness. I always thought that forgiving someone showed what an amazing person I could be. Selfish forgiveness (and grace) come from me, and – since I am human – they come with strings attached. Selfless forgiveness comes from above me and proves what an amazing heart our Savior has because there are no conditions or strings. Selfless (and true) forgiveness does not come from a human. It comes through a human from The Spirit.
When forgiveness flows through us, we are able to show grace and mercy because these actions come from outside of us. They come from the only source of grace and forgiveness: our Heavenly Father.
As humans, we cannot fully comprehend selfless love until we know Him. Even then, it’s a constant struggle to leave our human thoughts behind and follow His thoughts and ways. Why? Because we are not sinless. We are not perfect. We all fall short. However, our efforts are always rewarded with His pure grace, forgiveness, and love.
If we expect to be forgiven, we must pay it forward and forgive others. We need to learn how to pray to learn how to offer forgiveness without condition.
Colossians 3:13 13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (NIV)
Matthew 6:14-15 14 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.