Forgiveness is costly



(to avoid auditory chaos don't forget to scroll all the way to the bottom of the blog to pause the music)

Forgiveness   by Beckah Shae
Betrayed and let down, they gossip and slander
They sabotage You as they mock You, it’s just a mess!
But I refuse to amuse the lies
And whether or not they apologize
I’m moving on, I’m going to let go cause I got to fly

Laying down all that’s in the past, no bitterness
Putting aside all my pain and my pride, to be blessed
I’ve learned what we hold against someone else
Will only wind up hurting ourselves
We need love motivation

Forgiveness, there’s healing in your wings
Your peace it lets me breathe
Forgiveness, You’re the reason why I live
I’m worth only what I give
Forgiveness

The damage is done, the scars still remain
But I gained wisdom and strength
So I declare the victory is won

I refuse to amuse the pain
Won’t let it take my freedom away
I’m moving on, I’m going to let go
Cause tomorrow’s a better day

Laying down all that’s in the past, no bitterness
Putting aside all my pain and my pride, to be blessed
I’ve learned what we hold against someone else
Will only wind up hurting ourselves
We need love motivation

Forgiveness, there’s healing in your wings
Your peace it lets me breathe
Forgiveness, You’re the reason why I live
I’m worth only what I give
Forgiveness

I am only human, I am so imperfect
And I’m whole heartedly
asking You to forgive me, oh
Forgive me, forgive me, forgive me

You got to take in the air and just breathe in
Believe in order to let a broken heart
start beat, beat beating’ again
A gain of restored grace
From a flash in a past space
What’s left is a bad taste

Repairing from despair
Which left you unaware
That others desperation of hating’
Which had you stating’ what was done in the past,
History, so ill, the sting from the blow, fast hit, it’s so real

Faced with the options presented
Forgive or resent it. to live or regret it, grip or forget it
You got to love or hate it
See, the truth’s been stated
Let it go, because the past has been dated

Now pardon me of my faults in the fall of me
Dignity placed in all we see
Drawn from a source of what we can’t force
A loving trace of a crimson course
Of course, no remorse in

Forgiveness, there’s healing in your wings
Your peace it lets me breathe
Forgiveness, You’re the reason why I live
I’m worth only what I give
Forgiveness

The reason why I live
I’m worth only what I give
Forgiveness






In the last couple years I have been tested in the area of forgiveness.   Tested to the core.


True forgiveness costs the giver everything, but the reward of that obedience is worth so much more.  I have seen that lived out by a dear friend in a magnificent way over the last couple years. 


Still, it is a struggle for me.  
 Forgiveness is not divine amnesia.   The injustice remains unjust.  The victim is still victimized.  The lies are still lies.  The slander is still echoing.  The smoke of deception  is still billowing.   The ripple effects of  sin are still devastating.  
Nothing has changed. 
but...
everything has changed.   
"The damage is done, the scars still remain
But I gained wisdom and strength
So I declare the victory is won"


The victory is won because the victory is His.  He WILL be glorified despite the mockery of his grace.   He is already being glorified despite and because of it.




Forgiveness is releasing the hurt, the offense, and the wound to the only One to knows exactly what grace truly costs. 


Offense, unforgiveness, and bitterness are traps  that lure and entice but  they are a trap carefully set for us by the enemy.
They become a cancer that spreads through the mind, body and spirit.  
 I choose life.  Life to the full.  I choose freedom, 
even when my pride, my knowledge, my agony  for those I love, and  my sense of justice cry out  for vindication. 
 I realize that the "my" in this sentence is misplaced.   
What God is doing has very little to do with me...
 other than teaching me how to forgive when faced with the most disturbing reality.
   
For years  have prayed to know the heart of Jesus more clearly.  This is  his heart.  


"But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us."


Would I die for people who hate me?
While we were still God haters, He died for us.
  It's hard enough to die to my own pride never mind actually die physically for someone who despises me  or lies about me.  


Forgiveness is costly. Especially while you are still being hurt and rejected.   Bitterness is easy.


I can show respect.   I can choose to bless those who curse me.    I can love only through the grace of Christ living in me.
Forgiveness does not mean that it doesn't matter.  Forgiveness does not mean that it doesn't hurt.  Forgiveness does not mean a complete absence of consequences and boundaries.  Forgiveness does not mean that destroying people,  betraying trust,  hurting children, or tearing apart families is ok.    It's not.  
God knows how wrong it is.
No matter how seemingly small or how blatantly horrific....our sin matters so much that it put Jesus on the cross to carry the weight of it.  
Grace understands the full extent of the violation, looks it in the eye, and offers forgiveness that isn't earned or deserved.


Our forgiveness of someone does not require an apology or repentance from the offender.  It would bring further restoration and healing but sometimes that never comes.  Sometimes they continue to deceive right to the end of their phony life, or speak slander on their deathbed.    We can't wait for an apology to be obedient to God's command to forgive.  He not only commands us to do it, but he does it himself. 


Can I forgive even without an honest resolution, without witnessing repentance, or without an end to the mess in sight? 
Not without Christ I can't.    Not if don't daily seek him, focus on Him, release it to him, and learn to love others through Him.    
So often I slip and am tempted to bitterness.
Then I am humbled again by my own unforgiveness and again I seek the grace of my Father.


Until we are faced with  injustice, rejection,  and betrayal ourselves it is easy to simplify the forgiveness God offers us.
It is easy to forget the enormous cost at which it was made ours.
Only in Him are we made good.  Our God does not overlook, close his eyes, or pretend we are good when we are all wrong.
Only through the cross of Christ the unholy is made holy.  


When it comes to forgiving someone who has hurt you  (or hurt people you love) praying is key.   If the person or people are still alive praying unselfishly for the person who is the object of your offense or the source of your wound is essential.   It is so hard.  I don't say that without struggling through this on many occasions myself.  Sometimes even the name of the person gets caught in your  throat as you work through your own emotions and hurt.   God will meet you there.   Little by little as you pray for, intercede for, and pray blessings on that person your heart will begin to change....even when that person does not.  You will begin to see that person through God's eyes instead of the eyes of your own hurt. 

After all, we do not battle against flesh and blood.  When we pray we engage as warriors in a battle that cannot be fought in the flesh.  That is where the battle is won.  That is where we already have the victory.  That is where the sinners chains are loosened,  the blind folds are removed and broken hearts are mended.  I am learning so much more about prayer and fasting this year.


God is working even when we don't see it.  I am learning to trust in a new way. I can trust him with the "wrongness" and the injustice as I learn to humble myself, pray, and forgive. 


Nothing we do or don't do, acknowledge or refuse to acknowledge, forgive or refuse to forgive will be taken to the grave with you.  Our choices live on past us.   The hurt that is caused can ripple on for generations  OR it can be given over to our healer, our savior and used for his glory for generations to come.   
















Comments

Melanie said…
oh my goodness, Carla, I am so thankful you commented on my blog so I could find and experience yours. Your writing stirs me in the depths of my spirit. Your story of loss and life and family and obedient faith inspires me.

I look forward to being a follower.

blessings to you and your beautiful family!

http://kevinandmel.com

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