Tag Archives: forgiveness

What Shape Are Your In?

7 Dec

God’s WordPsalms 119:41-48shape-of-love

God’s Attribute: Love that shapes our lives

God’s Message to me:

Have you stopped to consider how your love shapes other lives?  The amount of love, forgiveness, compassion and kindness you give others shapes their very being.  In the same way, the extent to which you respond to My love and forgiveness, compassion and kindness, shapes your very being.  You cannot give what you do not possess.  Accept from Me and then pass on to others.  My love and attributes can flow through your life, into the lives of others.  Oh, how hungry the world is for My love, forgiveness, compassion and kindness.  But unless they see it reflected in you—they may miss it altogether.

Guard what I have entrusted to you.  Use the words of counsel you read from My Word to shape your life and shape how you relate to others.  My truth and wisdom do not flow into your life by osmosis—you must search them out and then live them out in the school of hard knocks.  Do you deserve My love and forgiveness?  What could you ever do to deserve the sacrifice that was given on your behalf—the death of Christ?  Then why do you think others should be deserving of your love and forgiveness.

To fully benefit from My gift of love and forgiveness, you must allow it to shape your thoughts and be extended to all others—regardless of whether they deserve it or not.  Regardless of whether they accept you or not—you be My hands, feet and mouth that conveys My love for your world.

God’s Question for me

How has My love shaped the way you relate to others in your life?

God’s Promise to me

My love shapes your life so you can shape other lives on My behalf.

My Prayer to Emulate God’s Attributes:  I Pledge:

My mind: To focus on forgiveness instead of retribution.

My voice:  To be an encourager of others by ready forgiveness.

My heart:  To express my appreciation of your love by loving others.

My body:  To serve others in appreciation for Your forgiveness of me.

When the Books Are Opened

8 Mar

God’s Word:  Revelation 20:1-15

God’s Message to me: (My interpretation of what God is saying in these verses)book of life

Some engage in the activity of writing the story of their life.  They edit out what they don’t want their descendants to know.  They make every effort to bring out the best in themselves and appear the hero.  Do you realize that I too have a copy of the story of your life—the real story.  At the appointed time that book will be opened to reveal how you lived your life.  But take heart; there is a way to hide all that you are ashamed of.  While you can’t undo what you have done there is a way to block it out of My book of life.

Jesus willingly put His life on the line to block out your sins in My book of life. The perfect One died so that you could be gifted with life eternal.  He paid what He didn’t owe to save your soul for eternity.  Some think that means everyone will be gifted with forgiveness and eternal life.  Not so.  I would not force Myself on anyone.  Those who ignore My Word and refuse My counsel are free to walk away from Me.  But the offer of salvation is open to whosoever chooses.  My invitation to life eternal is found in My Word—the Bible.  Ignore My Word and refuse My offer of forgiveness.

Today is a new day and the page is empty.  You choose what is written by the choices you make this day.  As you open the Bible I will personally interact with your spirit and give you understanding that is beyond human comprehension.  My Book is not the kind that you read once and then sit back on the shelf.  Every time you open it, I will speak to your point of need at that very moment.  That is Me between the lines deepening your understanding, comfort and peace.  My greatest desire is to share forgiveness and life eternal with you.

God’s Question:

What will go into your book of life today?

God’s Promise:

Forgiveness for those who come to Jesus.

My Prayer to God:

I Praise You for Jesus’ offer of forgiveness.

I am Sorry I don’t share that offer more with others.

Thank You for this reminder to be about sharing Your Good News.

Please Help Me live daily to honor You and bless others.

Heart Medicine

29 Feb

God’s Word: I Thessalonians 3

God’s Message to Me: (My interpretation of what God is saying through these verses)heart medicine

Good news is the best kind of medicine for the heart!  When you are anxious you feel tightness in your chest.  But to get a good report gives you a breath of fresh air of relaxation.  Your whole body is at peace.  (The doctor says “cancer-free.”  The judge says “not guilty.”  The bill says “paid in full.” Your friend says “I forgive you.”)

Life is all about relationships.  Even your relationship with Me is tied up in your relationships with all others.  As you give love to others—you are giving love to Me.  When you withhold love from others—you are withholding love from Me.  I am right there with you in the midst of all things relational.

What does that mean to you?  I freely give you My love with the intent that it will fill your life and splash over onto everyone around you—the best kind of heart medicine.  I forgive you and expect that you will forgive others—all others.  To refuse to forgive others is a refusal to accept My forgiveness.  Forgiveness is GOOD NEWS to both hearts–the forgiver and the one forgiven.

God’s Question for Me:

Are there any apologies you need to give to help someone forgive you?

God’s Promise to Me:

I am with you and will help you forgive and ask for forgiveness.

My Prayer to God:

I Praise You for Your pure love given to us, undeserving as we are.

I am Sorry for my own refusal to set self aside and genuinely care about others and share Your love as You asked me too.

Thank You for always being there for us, ready and eager to help us in loving and caring for others.

Please Help Me to honestly and genuinely love others and let Your love splash out from my life and drench others with Your pure and unselfish love.  May the amazing grace You offer me pour forth from my life to others—all others.

What Provokes God?

2 Nov

Sterling Principle # 28

Proverbs 24:17-18enemies

“Don’t laugh when your enemy falls; don’t crow over his collapse, God might see, and become very provoked, and then take pity on his plight.”

What makes a person our enemy?  It takes two to have an enemy relationship.  If they are our enemy it means we are reciprocating evil for evil most likely. Matthew 6:14, 15 “In prayer there is a connection between what God does and what you do. You can’t get forgiveness from God, for instance, without also forgiving others. If you refuse to do your part, you cut yourself off from God’s part.” If we have an “enemy” that means we have refused to forgive them.  To refuse to forgive is to refuse God’s offer of forgiveness for one’s self.

To laugh over a disaster that overtakes an enemy means that we have accepted the enemy relationship.  We have not forgiven.  That is our first and foremost problem.  But to laugh at their ruin provokes God because He sees our true heart of unforgiveness.  He will have more compassion for our enemy than we do and that hurts Him because He wants to forgive us.  But He cannot forgive us if we do not forgive others.  That is why it is said that to refuse to forgive hurts us more than any supposed “enemy.”

Consider the extent to which Jesus went to forgive our sins.  He did not fight back to those who made themselves His enemy.  He submitted to their torture and humiliation as an example to us of what we may have to face.  His prayer while hanging on the cross was “Father forgive them for they don’t realize what they are doing.”  That must also be our dying prayer.  That means we take no enemies to our death beds, for in so doing we seal our own fate—cutting ourselves off from God’s forgiveness. There is only one way to take no enemies to our death-bed and that is to forgive daily whatever we have against another person.  Don’t provoke God!

God’s Question: Will you invite Me to help you forgive?

God’s Promise: To harbor resentment is to refuse My forgiveness.

My Prayer to God:

I praise You for your willingness to forgive us all.

I am sorry I have way too often failed to forgive.

Thank You for this reminder to always forgive.

Help me keep short accounts with anger and just forgive.

Is Atonement Outdated?

18 Jun

Leviticus 17

Lessons for Living Today:

The animal sacrifices of the Old Testament, were for the purpose of atonement? atonement In examining the meaning of the word I find it means reconciliation.  In this case it means to bring mankind back into favor with a holy God. It may be better understood at saying “at-one-ment.”  In sacrificing a perfect animal by the shedding of its blood, atonement was achieved. God built into humanity the realization that one is responsible for their choice of words and deeds and held accountable.  Without accountability chaos reigns.

But we no longer sacrifice animals!  Does that mean atonement is no longer needed?  Did the sacrifices of yesterday take care of our disobedience today? Is atonement now outdated?  God knew that the sacrifice of animals would not fix the human condition of sin. Therefore he sent Jesus, as his perfect sacrificial Lamb, to die by the shedding of His holy blood, to make ATONEMENT for our sins.  That is why we no longer must sacrifice animals.  Jesus became our sacrifice, good once for all.

How does Jesus’ death provide me with at-one-ment with God? John 3:16 “This is how much God loved the world: He gave his Son, his one and only Son. And this is why: so that no one need be destroyed; by believing in him, anyone can have a whole and lasting life. God didn’t go to all the trouble of sending his Son merely to point an accusing finger, telling the world how bad it was. He came to help, to put the world right again. Anyone who trusts in him is acquitted.”  Acts 2:38, 39, Peter said, “Change your life. Turn to God and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ, so your sins are forgiven. Receive the gift of the Holy Spirit

God’s Question: Have you come to Jesus for atonement?

God’s Promise: I love you!

My Prayer to God:

I praise You for Jesus sacrificial atonement for even me.

I am sorry I take this for granted way too often.

Thank You for patiently dealing with me.

Help me share Your good news of atonement far and wide.

Oops!

29 May

Leviticus 4

Lessons for Living Today:

How do we hope God responds to our “oops?”  OopsI think most of us hope that God knows our good intentions and overlooks our slip ups.  In the Old Testament, people were required to bring an offering for their “unintentional (oops) sins.”  Leviticus says they were guilty even though no one was aware of it. Each time I read of these laws I’m reminded of our great blessing in Jesus’ forgiveness.  He set aside those endless laws of “making it up to God.”  Sadly, many have thrown out the baby with the bath water.  Since forgiveness is so easy let’s do whatever feels good—hang the consequences.

Our “oops” are enough to hang us!  Jesus said, “No, don’t hang them, hang Me and forgive them.” Oh my goodness!  We take so much for granted and go about our merry way.  I see that I need daily checks and balances to help me on track in life.  And what is the track I want to be on? I want to be on track with God, and I can because of Jesus “hanging” for me.  God, in His gracious love, provided all I need to stay on track through His Word the Bible.  As I am into the Word I see where I am off track and make corrections.

God’s Word says that if we want Him to forgive our “oops,” we must forgive the “oops” of others.  That seems only fair—a natural consequence—but it is hard to do.  We are so forgiving of ourselves and so condemning of others.  That is one of those unintentional sins that we must become aware of and change our course of living and forgiving.  One tremendous benefit of getting on God’s track is the wonderful benefits of living by His rules instead of our own “oops.”  The prisons are full of those who disregarded forgiving others and took life into their own hands. There are no prisons on God’s track!

God’s Question: Is there someone you need to forgive?

God’s Promise: I forgive you based on your forgiveness of others.

My Prayer to God:

I praise You for Your amazing forgiveness.

I am sorry I so often fail to be forgiving.

Thank You for Your Word that guides my living.

Help me stay on Your track and willingly forgive others.

What is a Sacrifice?

19 May

Exodus 38:  More directions for building articles for the Tabernacle.

Lessons for Living Today:

For many centuries women have used mirrors.  bronze-mirrorsDuring the Exodus years mirrors were made of highly polished bronze.  They usually had a handle to keep fingerprints off the reflective area.  Now consider if I only had one mirror made of bronze, and bronze was needed to make some of the furniture of the Tabernacle.  Could I sacrifice my only mirror?  Many of the women of that day sacrificed theirs.  Most of us are able to sacrifice something we value when we become convinced that another purpose is higher than our own.

Jesus sacrificed His life for our sake.  In the Old Testament God required the people to “give up” a perfect animal as restitution for sin.  A lamb was often the sacrifice.  Jesus came, during the New Testament, and called the perfect Lamb of God.  His life was given up on the cross, as the permanent sacrifice for our sins.  No longer do we need sacrifice an animal.  Jesus sacrificed His sinless life so we could have our sins removed forever from God’s sight.  No sin can be in God’s presence and we have all sinned. But Jesus stood in the gap and his forgiveness wipes away our sin.

Jesus considered our salvation more valuable than His life.  In human flesh that crucifixion was as painful to Him as to anyone else. He suffered and died that so we might be forgiven.  He did that for us because of His great love that knows no boundaries.  But what can we to do to get in on His forgiveness.  The key to open the door of salvation is to believe on Him as the son of God and follow in His steps of personal sacrifice.  I’m sure the women during the Exodus were saddened to give up their mirrors.  They willingly did so for the greater good of the community.  Jesus too sacrificed.  Will we?

God’s Question: What will you sacrifice so others can know Jesus?

God’s Promise: Eternal salvation purchased by Jesus for all.

My Prayer to God:

I praise You for Jesus’ willingness to die for even me.

I am sorry I am not as eager to sacrifice for others.

Thank You for not giving up on me.

Help me to give of myself fully into Your service for others.

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