During the holiday season: Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s, we are frequently reminded to keep our focus on Jesus.
This weekend, I had a lesson in that, but it wasn’t what I expected.
Saturday, we needed to restock our furniture booth and we were discussing what to take.
My husband commented on a set of items he wanted to sell and I responded.
In the moment, I thought my motivation was “being wise”.
Looking back, I can see my motivation wasn’t wisdom at all, instead it was fear.
I hadn’t kept Jesus first in my thoughts, nor had I even heard my husband out.
James 1:19-20 NKJV — So then, my beloved brethren, let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath; for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
I failed to apply God’s Word.
Proverbs 10:19 KJV — In the multitude of words there wanteth not sin: but he that refraineth his lips is wise.
Thankfully, my husband was quick to forgive me after I prayed and apologized.
My time with the Lord got my attitude corrected.
The Lord reminded me that keeping Him first shouldn’t be limited to my Christmas celebration, but should be my lifestyle.
Matthew 6:33-34 NKJV — “But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
No matter what you are facing today, I hope you are able to keep Jesus first.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for the truth of Your love. Thank You for reminding me that You have every detail under control and I need to trust You and trust my husband, for You gave him to me. Lord, please help me to keep You and Your Word first in my heart, that I might not sin against You or anyone else. Lord, thank You for Your forgiveness and my husband’s. Thank You for showing me an area of fear I didn’t know I had. Lord, please guard my heart from fear, envy, selfish ambition, and falsehood. Lord, help me to be real with those around me and open to listening. Lord, help me to find my comfort in Your Word and my needs met in Your truth, for You always provide, You are faithful and always good. Thank You! In Your name, I ask these things, Jesus. Amen.
No matter the circumstance, there always seems to be something which tempts us to think better of ourselves than others.
The Bible warns against pride, and we see the consequences of it in both the Old and New Testaments.
Thus saith the LORD, Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might, let not the rich man glory in his riches: but let him that glorieth glory in this, that he understandeth and knoweth me, that I am the LORD which exercise lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness, in the earth: for in these things I delight, saith the LORD. Jeremiah 9:23-24 KJV
1 Corinthians 1:31 KJV — That, according as it is written, He that glorieth, let him glory in the Lord.
Pride hides underneath many cloaks, but the evidence of it is a lack of love and respect for others.
This most dangerous foe: pride; sets itself up against all others, including God, when allowed to reign in our lives.
Recently, the Lord has been dealing with my heart and the pride which I had been blind to.
It reared it’s ugly head when a circumstance triggered in me both fear and some resentment.
At the time it felt like a battle within between what I knew was the correct choice, the proper response, and my emotions which were all over between panic and anger.
While walking through this, God brought the truth through the words of a friend.
“What’s my problem?” I spoke with frustration.
“The problem is you love yourself too much.”
Her words were truth and cut straight through all my excuses, all my reasons, all my emotions.
Humility, although difficult, is the first step to defeating pride.
The next was to seek God’s forgiveness and other’s, for in my struggle I’d reacted poorly to those around me.
Since then, I’ve been allowing the Word to wash me, seeking His truth, and requesting He reveal my heart completely, that every trace of pride would be dealt with.
It’s not been easy.
I’m ashamed to say I have allowed a great deal of pride to grow where I never realized it was residing.
But the part that hurts the most is where I’ve allowed pride to puff me up.
I allowed pride to keep careful track of others’ errors, their shortcomings, their mistakes, almost as if God needed a record keeper.
It wasn’t an intentional thing, but very subtle, because I know God doesn’t want me to keep such a record, ever.
Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. I Corinthians 13:4-7 NKJV
It’s opposite of love and kills my desire to trust that person.
The worst part of pride is the way it taints my walk with God.
The arrogance God revealed to me was coloring my ability to surrender myself and my family before Him.
Some of this pride has been a habit of long standing and God is having to purify me in ways I didn’t expect.
I’m so thankful for His truth shining into my heart and dealing with me, no matter how painful or embarrassing.
It’s worth every bit of the discomfort.
I want to dwell with the Lord Jesus and be completely humbled before Him.
Proverbs 11:2 KJV — When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for dealing with my heart and showing me the ways of pride and arrogance in my life. Lord, I thank You for how You used things I never expected to show me the truth. Lord, continue to wash me with Your Word that I might be completely humbled before You daily. Lord, I have confessed my errors before You and Your forgiveness has been so sweet! Such beautiful gifts of mercy and grace You bestow! May my heart be chastened daily, that no speck of pride be allowed admittance. Let me be Your maidservant, without regard to anything save the joy of serving You. Thank You for Your blessings, Jesus. May my life bring glory to Your name. Amen.
And the Lord restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed the Lord gave Job twice as much as he had before. Job 42:10 NKJV
I’ve been inspired by Job’s story for many years, but this time of reading through it, I learned an incredible lesson about forgiveness.
Job had lost all his wealth, the care of his wife, and every single one of his children died in the same day.
As if this wasn’t enough his health breaks down and he’s covered from head to toe in extremely painful and ugly sores.
He had three friends who heard of his plight and came to comfort him in his sorrow.
When they first saw him, they didn’t recognize him, were struck with grief and sat for days in silent mourning with Job.
Then, they began speaking, and accused Job of secret sins which brought all this tragedy on him as severe punishment from God.
When Job denies it, they grow abusive in their comments, berating Job for a hard heart and rebellion against God.
Everything changes when God shows up.
Job 42:7-9NKJV — And so it was, after the LORD had spoken these words to Job, that the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, “My wrath is aroused against you and your two friends, for you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has. Now therefore, take for yourselves seven bulls and seven rams, go to My servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and My servant Job shall pray for you. For I will accept him, lest I deal with you according to your folly; because you have not spoken of Me what is right, as My servant Job has. So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went and did as the LORD commanded them; for the LORD had accepted Job.
The next verse is profound.
Job 42:10 NKJV — And the LORD restored Job’s losses when he prayed for his friends. Indeed the LORD gave Job twice as much as he had before.
Job prayed for his three friends who had recently been so unkind.
Here is the man who has lost everything and God is requesting he give even more to those who least deserve it.
Job had to have forgiven these three to pray sincerely for them.
And he did.
Job didn’t bargain with God.
He didn’t argue with God.
Job didn’t hesitate; he prayed.
He forgave these three friends and restored Job to his previous standard plus more.
The key to how Job could do quickly forgive is this:
Job 42:5-6 NKJV — “I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear, But now my eye sees You.Job Therefore I abhor myself, And repent in dust and ashes.”
Job had seen God and it changed everything.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for recording this story of Job’s. Thank You that You hold all truths in Your hands. Thank You that You see all of us, each one. You know us better than we know ourselves. You love us so much You paid the highest price, for who can repay God is only Son? It’s not as if one man died for another. It’s the Creator of the universe chose to be clothed in human form and died for all mankind. If You put such a high price on purchasing our forgiveness from sin, we should definitely be quick to forgive one another. Lord, thank You that Job walked through all these trials and yet never blamed You, never turned away from You. Lord, let that be me and my family. Let us always praise You and seek Your face, forgiving as we have been forgiven, loving as we have loved. Thank You, Lord. Amen.
Like the salty spray can wear away rock, so can bitterness erode love in the heart of a child of God.
Jonah was a prophet of the Most High. 2 Kings 14:25
The Lord gave him a specific prophecy.
Jonah 1:1-2 NKJV — Now the word of the LORD came to Jonah the son of Amittai, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and cry out against it; for their wickedness has come up before Me.”
Unfortunately, Jonah choose disobedience.
Jonah 1:3 NKJV — But Jonah arose to flee to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD. He went down to Joppa, and found a ship going to Tarshish; so he paid the fare, and went down into it, to go with them to Tarshish from the presence of the LORD.
The Lord was merciful and sent a storm, then a fish. Jonah 1:4-17, 2
For the Lord corrects His children.
My son, do not despise the chastening of the Lord, Nor detest His correction; For whom the Lord loves He corrects, Just as a father the son in whom he delights. Proverbs 3:11-12 NKJV
Then He speaks to Jonah again.
Jonah 3:1-2NKJV — Now the word of the LORD came to Jonah the second time, saying, “Arise, go to Nineveh, that great city, and preach to it the message that I tell you.”
This time Jonah obeys and his message is a difficult one.
Jonah 3:4 NKJV — And Jonah began to enter the city on the first day’s walk. Then he cried out and said, “Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!”
These pagan people turn and repent, including their king.
Jonah 3:7-9 NKJV — And he caused it to be proclaimed and published throughout Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, “Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste anything; do not let them eat, or drink water. But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily to God; yes, let every one turn from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hands. Who can tell if God will turn and relent, and turn away from His fierce anger, so that we may not perish?”
God was merciful.
Jonah 3:10 NKJV — Then God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God relented from the disaster that He had said He would bring upon them, and He did not do it.
Jonah not only experienced God’s mercy himself, he saw God extend mercy to an entire city which had previously been enemies of His people.
With such incredible works of God, one would expect His servant to rejoice.
But that’s not what happened.
Jonah 4:1-3 NKJV — But it displeased Jonah exceedingly, and he became angry. So he prayed to the LORD, and said, “Ah, LORD, was not this what I said when I was still in my country? Therefore I fled previously to Tarshish; for I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger and abundant in lovingkindness, One who relents from doing harm. Therefore now, O LORD, please take my life from me, for it is better for me to die than to live!”
Jonah couldn’t rejoice in the saving of the city, because he didn’t want it saved.
In Jonah, we see what happens to a child of God who allows bitterness to take root.
Bitterness, towards these enemies of his nation, had robbed him of his ability to love and trust God knew what was best.
In his heart he knew God’s character, but he wanted judgment not mercy.
The human heart is often at odds with the Word of God, for at the same time we want mercy and grace for ourselves and our loved ones, but we want judgment and punishment for those who have hurt us.
But that is not what God calls His people to.
James 3:9-10 NKJV — With it we bless our God and Father, and with it we curse men, who have been made in the similitude of God. Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so.
Matthew 5:44-45 NKJV — “But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.”
Jonah is a warning for us, to not allow bitterness to override our love and devotion to God.
Rather, we need to be quick to forgive those who have wronged us, placing our trust in God, who sees all, even the depth of each heart.
For we can not truly love God if we are holding on to bitterness.
Dear friends, never take revenge. Leave that to the righteous anger of God. For the Scriptures say, “I will take revenge; I will pay them back,” says the Lord. Instead, “If your enemies are hungry, feed them. If they are thirsty, give them something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals of shame on their heads.” Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good. Romans 12:19-21 NLT
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for the story of Jonah. Lord, I am amazed at Your mercy and grace throughout. You use Jonah’s disobedience, You save an entire city of wicked people, You even teach Your stubborn hard hearted servant a lesson. Thank You! Lord, please help us to learn from these things. Help us to be quick to forgive, honest with ourselves and You when we are hurting. Lord, please teach us how to love our enemies. Please shine Your truth into this dark world and let those who have yet to know You come to a knowledge of You, Lord. Please work through Your children to bring the message of hope to this world. Thank You. Amen.
Ephesians 4:32 KJV — And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
Colossians 3:13 KJV — Forbearing one another, and forgiving one another, if any man have a quarrel against any: even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.
It’s not the easiest thing to give, but it is one of the most important.
For those who are called by Christ’s name, it is a command.
We must forgive others.
Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Therefore the kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. And when he had begun to settle accounts, one was brought to him who owed him ten thousand talents. But as he was not able to pay, his master commanded that he be sold, with his wife and children and all that he had, and that payment be made. The servant therefore fell down before him, saying, ‘Master, have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt. “But that servant went out and found one of his fellow servants who owed him a hundred denarii; and he laid hands on him and took him by the throat, saying, ‘Pay me what you owe!’ So his fellow servant fell down at his feet and begged him, saying, ‘Have patience with me, and I will pay you all.’ And he would not, but went and threw him into prison till he should pay the debt. So when his fellow servants saw what had been done, they were very grieved, and came and told their master all that had been done. Then his master, after he had called him, said to him, ‘You wicked servant! I forgave you all that debt because you begged me. Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?’ And his master was angry, and delivered him to the torturers until he should pay all that was due to him. “So My heavenly Father also will do to you if each of you, from his heart, does not forgive his brother his trespasses.” Matthew 18:22-35 NKJV
Nothing compares to the forgiveness we have from God.
If He can grant us such incredible forgiveness, we should forgive those who have wronged us.
And it’s across the board forgiveness, we don’t get to pick and choose who and what we will forgive.
Jesus’s words make it clear, that our souls will suffer if we refuse to forgive others.
Choosing not to forgive is planting the poisonous infectious seed of bitterness.
This Christmas, let us examine our hearts, and resolve to give the gift of forgiveness wherever it is required, for so Christ forgave us.
That is why He came, to pay the price of our sin, so we can receive eternal life.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your forgiveness. Lord, please help me never to cheapen Your precious gift by refusing to pass it on. Lord, there are others who have suffered far more than I, and their example of forgiveness is inspiring. Please examine my heart and help me to see if there’s any place where I am bitter, unforgiving, or choosing to hold someone guilty of something. Lord, You are the One who sees and knows all. I trust You to handle the judgement of others. I choose to relinquish all things unto You. Lord, help me to always look first to You and then to my fellow human. Please help me to choose forgiveness in all cases. I love You, Jesus. Thank You for first loving me. Amen.
Genesis 50:20 KJV — But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
It’s one of the more astounding moments in scripture.
Joseph was born into a dysfunctional family.
His father was married twice, and both wives were jealous of the other, which caused no end of strife.
The first wife was unloved and the second wife was barren, until Joseph was finally born.
He, the son of Rachel, was dearly loved by his father.
By the time Joseph was old enough to be working with the family business, his brothers hated him.
It didn’t help that he turned in a poor report on some of them to his father.
To add fuel to the hatred, Joseph wasn’t as careful with his words as he could have been.
He had dreams of a future where he would lead the entire family.
He told them to his brothers and his father.
His brothers’ hatred grew.
There was no excuse for what they did to him, but it is very obvious how the discord in this family led to incredible evil.
Genesis 37:26-28NKJV — So Judah said to his brothers, “What profit is there if we kill our brother and conceal his blood? Come and let us sell him to the Ishmaelites, and let not our hand be upon him, for he is our brother and our flesh.” And his brothers listened. Then Midianite traders passed by; so the brothers pulled Joseph up and lifted him out of the pit, and sold him to the Ishmaelites for twenty shekels of silver. And they took Joseph to Egypt.
They sold their brother as a slave.
Life in Egypt was a rollercoaster for Joseph.
All of the years he was there God worked in his life.
Finally, he was promoted from life imprisonment to second in the kingdom.
God used him to save many people from starvation.
Including, his family, who had no idea that he was still alive.
The scriptures don’t tell us when Joseph forgave his brothers.
But it does show him responding to them with forgiveness and compassion.
Somewhere along the journey of his life, Joseph learned to forgive those who had hurt him and to trust God.
We know this by his words of comfort to his terrified brothers.
Genesis 50:20 KJV — But as for you, ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good, to bring to pass, as it is this day, to save much people alive.
Joseph wasn’t bitter, he didn’t seek revenge, because he could clearly see God had allowed the difficult, painful things in his life to bring about incredible good.
We can apply this to ourselves.
We must not allow bitterness to take root, we must forgive those who do us evil, trusting God to work through it.
Although we may not see how God uses the painful, difficult circumstances in our lives while walking through them, we can choose to cling to the truth: He will.
Many people throughout scripture walked through unjust, painful circumstances and God uses those things in their lives for good.
He hasn’t changed.
He’s still working.
Let us choose to both forgive others and to trust God.
Romans 8:28 KJV — And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You so much for Your Word. Lord, thank You for Your truth. Thank You for teaching us we must forgive, we must trust You. Please help me to walk in that truth, learning daily what it means in today. Lord, please return our hearts to wholeness, hearts of flesh which have been redeemed by Your sacrifice. Lord, great is Your faithfulness and greatly shall You be praised! Please continue to teach us each day, giving us life and truth through Your Word. Lord, please help us to be on our guard about the lies, discord, and strife of the enemy. Please help us to live trusting in You, loving others, and walking with integrity. Thank You for Your wonderous works! I praise Your holy name Lord Jesus! Amen.
Like this picture, my perspective was a little skewed.
My husband had said, “Why do you do that? Why do you contradict everything I say?”
I nearly laughed when I responded with, “I don’t.”
He raised his eyebrows at me and smiled.
Although, I really didn’t feel I always contradicted my husband I did feels prick about it when I was praying.
If it’s important to my husband it should be important to me.
So, I asked the Lord to help me see when I was arguing with him.
Turns out, I do contradict him, often.
It’s not malicious nor was I really aware of it.
But there’s so many little moments when I was not careful with my words.
Yesterday we were Zooming a friend and I realized my “quick to listen and slow to speak” was backwards.
I’d been quick to speak and slow to listen.
Thankfully, both God and my husband are very patient and forgiving.
Today, I’m asking the Lord to continue to help me with this area.
First, that I see myself clearly and then that I am careful with my words.
Because words that build up are not words of contradiction.
Yes, there are times and places to stand for the truth when a lie is being pronounced as truth.
But between my husband and myself, there’s no reason for me to speak as I have.
I know if we have a conflict or misunderstanding the way to handle it is not before others, not with words that infer he is completely wrong, but instead with honesty, compassion, and love.
My contradicting him was simply a blindness to my own carelessness.
Frankly, I’d be embarrassed if it weren’t for my husband’s loving attitude.
Which in turn makes me want to deal with this poor behavior even more.
It’s wonderful how God has brought to light an area which was askew and is teaching me how to correct it.
Just another example of God’s love, His goodness, and His grace.
1 Peter 2:24 NKJV — who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.
I’m so thankful to God!
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for showing me my error. Lord, please continue to teach me to guard my words, to be quick to listen and slow to speak. Lord, please continue to heal my perspective, that I might not sin against You or anyone else. Lord, my heart is glad You have broken through an area I was stubbornly refusing to see. Please let the words of David stand for me as well.
Psalm 69:5-6 NKJV — O God, You know my foolishness; And my sins are not hidden from You. Let not those who wait for You, O Lord GOD of hosts, be ashamed because of me; Let not those who seek You be confounded because of me, O God of Israel.
Lord, please do not allow my sins to hinder my family’s relationship with You. Instead, please use my errors to help my family avoid these things in their own life. Lord, I thank You for Your mercy and grace. I thank You for Your truth and patience. May Your name be glorified today. Amen.
Matthew 18:22 NKJV — Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.
He told a parable about forgiveness.
His most incredible truth is He forgave, in the midst of suffering.
Luke 23:34 KJV — Then said Jesus, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.
This true forgiveness didn’t end here.
Acts 7:59-60 NKJV — And they stoned Stephen as he was calling on God and saying, “Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.” Then he knelt down and cried out with a loud voice, “Lord, do not charge them with this sin.” And when he had said this, he fell asleep.
Through Jesus, we are forgiven by God of our sin, our wrong, our trespass.
And Jesus showed with His very life we too are to forgive.
In the midst of the suffering, in the middle of the pain, we are to look not at the wrong-doer, but instead at Jesus, the Healer.
It isn’t easy.
It’s not a one time thing.
It is a way of life, a choice, and a beautiful daily gift, from God to us and from us to others.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for forgiveness. Lord, please help me to walk with You in all things. Please help me to live in true forgiveness each day. Lord, thank You for Your example in all things.
Luke 11:2-4NKJV — So He said to them, “When you pray, say: Our Father in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done On earth as it is in heaven. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us. And do not lead us into temptation, But deliver us from the evil one.”
For Thine is the kingdom and the glory forever. Amen.
Did you ever notice when Jesus forgave those who were responsible for His death?
It was in the midst of His suffering.
Luke 23:34 KJV — Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. And they parted his raiment, and cast lots.
This truth struck me this morning as I was praying.
Jesus is the believer’s example in all things and that includes forgiveness.
Thus, we should be quick to forgive, even in the midst of the pain, right in the middle of the wrong, we need to forgive.
What about those things which happened already?
Yes, we need to forgive those who hurt us in the past as well.
Because Christ Jesus forgave us, we must forgive others.
Acts 5:31 NKJV — “Him God has exalted to His right hand to be Prince and Savior, to give repentance to Israel and forgiveness of sins.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your forgiveness. Thank You for Your example, that You chose to forgive, even in the middle of the most horrific abuse You were experiencing. Thank You that it doesn’t matter how much we are hurt, it matters how much You are willing and able to heal the hurt. Lord, thank You for Your incredible sacrifice. Thank You for salvation. Amen.
Ephesians 4:31 NKJV — Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.
“Let all …”
And His Word is clear, there’s no room for any.
None, nothing, not even a little bit, because He knows what is best and bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking are not.
Because bitterness is simply choosing not to forgive, holding someone accountable for wrong.
Wrath and anger are close cousins.
The Greek word wrath here means fierceness, indignation, wrath, while this Greek word for anger means anger, indignation, vengeance, wrath.
James 1:20 NKJV — for the wrath of man does not produce the righteousness of God.
Ecclesiastes 7:9 NKJV — Do not hasten in your spirit to be angry, For anger rests in the bosom of fools.
Clamor and evil speaking seem to be occurring at a startlingly rate, anyone can observe it’s not godly.
Proverbs 29:22 NKJV — An angry man stirs up strife, And a furious man abounds in transgression.
Proverbs 10:18 KJV — He that hideth hatred with lying lips, and he that uttereth a slander, is a fool.
Instead of these things we are to put on different behaviors, ones that spring forth from a heart forgiven by and surrendered to Christ Jesus.
Ephesians 4:32 NKJV — And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
Kindness and tenderhearted, priceless gifts to be given and to receive.
Luke 6:35 KJV — But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again; and your reward shall be great, and ye shall be the children of the Highest: for He is kind unto the unthankful and to the evil.
Matthew 6:14 KJV — For if ye forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you:
Following Jesus means forgiveness.
Acts 4:12 NKJV — “Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.”
For none gave more to forgive than He.
Hebrews 10:10 NKJV — By that will we have been sanctified through the offering of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Learning to walk in forgiveness is always an opportunity to trust God in everything and to grow, to stretch, to see life and others from His perspective.
Ephesians 5:1-2 NKJV — Therefore be imitators of God as dear children. And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma.
Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for these verses. Lord, I want to live a life of sacrifice unto You. I want my life to be pleasing before You, please help me to learn how, each day. Please help me to walk with You in all things. Lord, help me to understand Your truth and to hide it in my heart. Lord, show me my errors that I might repent and turn away from the things which would ensnare me. Lord, thank You for guiding me and loving me. Thank You for Your faithfulness, Your mercy, and Your grace. Amen.