Forgiveness

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Have you ever wondered what Satan’s greatest weapon is?

This week I encountered it again as I helped counsel several different people through a difficult situation.  What is that greatest weapon?  In my opinion it’s unforgiveness.

Over the last 25 years of full-time ministry I have found no issue within the church with the power to cause more destruction than unforgiveness.  Left unabated it can turn a vibrant, energized, God-honoring life into an ugly, dead, cancer that not only kills the person who refuses to forgive, but can also spread to others that life influences.

The decision not to forgive is ultimately a refusal to extend grace. 

In Hebrews 12:15 we read: “See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled;”

Unforgiveness not only has the power to destroy the person who feels offended, but an entire group of people as one persons offense is shared by all those who care about them.  Joy is lost, vision for God’s kingdom disappears, the lost are not won and the work of a local church stalls all because of unforgiveness.  I have seen it in dozens of churches and hundreds of lives.

What’s the answer?

Quickly resolve to forgive and move on.  Jesus told us that we would have trouble in this world and we shouldn’t be surprised when it occurs.  Offenses are going to happen because we live surrounded by people and people are imperfect.  Just today, I got busy and completely forgot a lunch appointment.  Fortunately, the individual that I stood up was gracious and mature and instantly extended grace.  The situation that I helped others work through ended in a similar extension of grace and the enemy of God’s plan was defeated.

The issue is not if we are transgressed, but rather when and how we will respond to it.

Jesus said in Luke 12:48 “To whom much is given much is required.”  We have been given great grace and it is required that we extend it to others.

Blessings

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