Wednesday, August 1, 2012

The Tides of Forgiveness



10-16-2011_077


The above picture shows footprints in the sand on a shoreline. Forgiveness is like what the tide does when it rolls in and washes the footprints away...The footprints are marks left in the sand, much like the hurts impressed upon our lives by others.

Have you ever built a sandcastle, only to have it stomped down by someone? I have.

Sometimes, instead of just footprints in our peaceful sand, there comes a solid stomp from the foot of one who seeks to destroy what we have so diligently built in our sand.


We are first shocked, then saddened...How could they? we might ask as we sit amongst the ruins. Then we become angry and may even seek vengence...You just wait until YOU build a sandcastle, I will stomp on it with BOTH feet... Ha...ha! ( I have an older brother can't you tell?)

The problem in the first place, is that I should not expect something that I built in the sand to last for more than a minute anyway; and I should never treasure whatever was built in sand.


“Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. “The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.” (Matthew 7:26)


Our lives are touched by the wind, the rains, the storms of life. With the passage of time comes change. These are all to be expected.

We have weathered the changes of the seasons, and have learned to adapt to the effects of the elements upon our lives; But footprints are an intrusion into the sand; they can have a devastating impact upon it.

Unlike the steady force of the wind shifting the sand from side to side, or the constant pattering from rain, drenching the sand and pulling it away, and spreading it thinner...a footprint is sudden, unexpected, and forceful; it can run deep and wide, crushing the sand beneath it's brutal weight, and kicking it aside, leaving behind the evidence of it's trespass!

What we need to remember, is that just as footprints in sand are temporary, so can be the effects from hurt inflicted upon us by others.

...And forgive us our trespasses,
As we forgive them that trespass against us...(
from
The Lord's Prayer)

We must make a choice to either become angry and stay that way even after the footprints have long faded, or we can be angry for a short season, and then allow the tide of forgiveness to forever wash away the footprints from our hearts and minds.


"If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins." (Matthew 5:7, 39-46)

 

The tides of forgiveness will wash them away, and we will be restored to a peaceful shore once again.

 He will again have compassion on us;
he will tread our iniquities underfoot.
  He will cast all our sins
into the depths of the sea. (Micah 7:19)

I am still learning how to forgive, and forget. I have learned that I can not do it by my own power, just as I can not save my own soul. I know now that Jesus has already taken all the punishment, not only for my sins, but for those who hurt me with their sins as well. And I must never forget what He said from the cross:

Then said Jesus, Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do. (Luke 23:34)

Therefore, if our Lord forgave those who crucified Him (while He still suffered), when they did not even acknowledge any wrongdoing, and had not asked Him for forgiveness for it... then who am I to withold forgiveness for wrongs that were done to or against me!

I believe we must learn from our life experiences, both good and bad, but we must move on, beyond the past, into whatever the Lord has for us...This is a foundation laid for us by Jesus Himself. He overcame death, and took our sins away, so that when the storms came, we would not fall. Even death can not harm our soul! Anything that we build on anything else but that foundation, will crumble and fall.
He remains steadfast and holds us in place when we have built our faith upon the Rock. We will not lose hope, when we place our future in His hands.

For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. (Jeremiah 29:11)

There is freedom, peace, and comfort there.

14 comments:

  1. It's not easy, but then nothing worthwhile ever is. I'm still trying to learn to forgive. The words of the Lord's Prayer keep reverberating in my mind "Forgive us our trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us." Wonderful post!

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    1. Hi Jane,
      Been busy working with drywall...the dust just seems to cling to everything! Not much fun. You are right, anything worthwhile is not easy. I seem to be gravitating to the Lord's prayer a lot lately too.
      ~God bless~Lisa

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  2. This is beautiful Lisa : ) I love it. It's so encouraging. Forgive and forget then move on. It's hard but necessary. Thanks for this.

    God bless!

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    1. Hi Karen,
      I am learning about the moving on part...we can't dwell on things, God has better things for us to do! Glad this encouraged you. ~God bless~Lisa

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  3. Hi Lisa,
    Forgiveness is hard but it is for our benefit, so our hearts do not become calloused and hardened. Forgiveness stings, it is like putting salt into an open wound, but like the salt it cleans and protects from infection.

    Beautiful post sister.
    <><

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    Replies
    1. Hi COG,
      You are right, the heart can become hardened if we hold onto any bitterness...I believe the bible call it a root of bitterness...for very good reason, a root can go far and deep, and be unseen until it has already done damage to whatever is in it's way! God wants us to be rooted in Him , in his love and mercy. ~God Bless~ Lisa

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  4. Forgiveness is something that I struggle with at well. Also, sometimes I can forgive, but I don't forget, and of course, that's just as bad. The part of the post that really spoke to me was when you were mentioning in Luke 23:34 that Jesus was willing to forgive those who crucified Him. It's something I had never thought about before until you mentioned it. This thought truly humbled me.

    Great post! I LOVED it! :)

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    1. Hi Mara,

      I think the forgetting part is where we all struggle. The Lord gave me a picture in my mind of him on the cross, saying those words of forgiveness while looking at those who were watching...and it hit me, that He took it all for us...every hurtful action or word that we would suffer, he took upon himself...and then forgave.
      ~God bless~ Lisa

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  5. Forgiveness is hard but oh how much better for us when we do as the Lord wants! Sweet relief as we release the people we forgive into the hands of our loving Father!

    Blessings to you Lisa...Chelle

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    1. Hi Chelle,
      I like how you said we release the people into the hands of the Father...what a gift we give to Him when we do that...Didn't Jesus do just that for us? He released us sinners from the bondage of our sin, into the hands of a merciful loving Father, instead of sending us to hell like we deserved!
      God Bless you~ Lisa

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  6. nice post thanks for sharing i found you thrue other follower..looking for to visit more...blessings

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    1. Hi My diary,

      Glad you liked it. Thanks for visiting, looking forward to further visits.
      ~God Bless~ Lisa

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  7. I really loved what was written in this post about forgiveness!!! Thank you for enabling me to read such a magnificent post as this!!!

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  8. You are very welcome Lon. This forgiveness lesson is one that the Lord has shown me must be mastered in order to grow as a follower of Christ...it has been a huge barrier in the path that God has chosen for me to walk...I know this is true of many of us Christians. I am even now, feeling a deeper sense of peace as the Lord is lifting a weight I carried for many years (unforgiveness)...God is giving me a heart of love instead...this is SUPERnatural...I can not explain it!

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