Saturday, September 17, 2011
Saturday, September 17-guest post by Pamela
Today's reading from the Chronological OT/NT Reading Plan is Isaiah 17-19; Ephesians 4.
Scripture: Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4:31 & 32 (ESV)
31-32Make a clean break with all cutting, backbiting, profane talk. Be gentle with one another, sensitive. Forgive one another as quickly and thoroughly as God in Christ forgave you.(The Message)
Observation: Forgiveness is commanded but what does that mean?
Application: This verse literally jumped off the page for me today. I've experienced something big in my life as of late that has been the cause of much stress. There has been anger, bitterness, and profane talk throughout the situation and it has caused me to step back from the situation. This retreat has been met with even more bitterness. If we are commanded to forgive, be kind, be tenderhearted, be gentle, and be sensitive what does this really mean? Does it mean I am personally responsible for resolving this tense situation? Does it mean that stepping back is the way to avoid the bitterness and anger? Does forgiveness require you to keep bitter and angry people in your life?
I love the Message's version that includes forgiving "quickly and thoroughly". Can forgiveness come quickly and throughly? What does forgiveness mean to you? I'd love to hear your thoughts...
Prayer: Lord, You know all things. You know my situation and You know every situation that the people following this blog are in. Lord, Your word gives us direction. Please help us to understand the direction you want us to go and how to apply Your instructions to each situation in our lives. Amen.