Theme of the Week: Don’t Just Exist
Bible Verse: “Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.” Colossians 3:13
Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:12-14
“Haste makes waste.” If I can be bold enough to add to an old saying, I would add that haste makes accidents.
My wife was trimming our three-year-old son’s hair. We were rushing because it was nearing bedtime, so I decided to help by taking over the scissors. As I was snipping quickly, I suddenly cut my son’s ear. Badly. He shrieked. And I saw with horror two parts of his ear flapping and blood gushing out from between.
Trying to maintain composure, for him and ourselves, we stopped the bleeding and bandaged the ear. I was gutted. Pangs of guilt washed over me. I felt like a terrible father, having disfigured my son’s ear for life. The next day we saw a doctor who recommended we let the ear heal itself.
Praise God for his healing touch on the half-inch cut; the two parts reattached and mended properly over the next few weeks. Eighteen years later, you can’t tell which ear had been cut.
This episode taught me anew about God’s grace. My sloppy mistake wasn’t the end of the story. It wasn’t a sin, but it sure felt like one. As we observed my son’s ear healing well over time, I sensed God’s grace, that I received a free pass. (I never cut my son’s hair again, if you’re wondering.)
The Bible tells us to “bear with each other and forgive one another” and to “forgive as the Lord forgave you” (Col 3:13). This command is necessary because fallible people make mistakes and sin. Frequently. Our different personality types can rub each other the wrong way so we need to bear with each other. We sometimes assert ourselves and say and do offensive things to each other.
We need forgiveness to keep relationships from spiraling out of control. It brings relationships back to equilibrium. Forgiveness offers second chances and third and fourth, just as God continues to give us another second chance. The ultimate motivation for Christians to forgive others is because they know the Lord has forgiven them.
That incident with my son has shaped me to be ready to overlook offenses against me. I sometimes joke that I’ll be prepared to forgive if someone spills hot coffee on my lap!
Don’t exist to get angry at the next offense, which will surely come. Instead, exist to demonstrate God’s forgiveness to others through Christ.
Prayer: Lord, I will always remember what Jesus did on the cross for me, extending forgiveness for my sins. I thank and worship you for this. Let me be ready to forgive others as you have forgiven me.
Reflection: Who in your life do you need to forgive? To whom can you extend forgiveness just as God in Christ has forgiven you?
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