One of my friends mentioned that a couple of recent sermons seemed to touch on her sins. She requested that I stop stepping on her toes and share a message on forgiveness. I really appreciate the suggestion. A word on forgiveness is just what we need.
Thanksgiving is around the corner. This is a good time to let go of the ill feelings we have been harboring against family and friends and forgive. Some of us have been angry so long we no longer even remember why we are angry. This year is a good year for letting it go. Let go of the grudge. Let go of replaying why you don’t like them. Let go of the anger.
As we let go of unforgiveness, we open ourselves to joy, freedom, and feeling good about life.
Okay, perhaps that was not quite the direction my friend was wanting me to go when she made her request. I imagine my friend wants to hear how God has forgiven her.
Well friend, here is a word for you and a word we all can benefit from hearing. According to the Apostle Paul we have been forgiven. In Romans 5:6-8 we find these words:
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. Indeed, rarely will anyone die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person someone might actually dare to die. But God proves his love for us in that while we still were sinners Christ died for us.
We are forgiven. Our sins put us on the outs with God, yet his love and forgiveness draw us back into relationship. God loves us and has forgiven us. When God hosts the family gathering, he is inviting all of us to the dinner. Yes, we may have upset him a time or two, gotten on his last nerve, but he is not holding a grudge. We are forgiven.
Now think about it. If God is able to forgive you and me of all of our crazy shenanigans, surely, we can find a way to forgive those who have messed up with us.
Forgiveness, that’s what we need to serve up at the Thanksgiving meal this year. With a little forgiveness we may find that this Thanksgiving meal is the best one we have experienced in a long time.