Theme of the Week: Forgiveness is Freedom
Bible Verse: If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone. Romans 12:18
Scripture Reading: 2 Timothy 4:14-15
Jesus paid a huge price for our forgiveness. He sacrificed everything to set us free from our sins and restore us to a right relationship with Him.
Because of His forgiveness, we also forgive. This honors Christ and sets us free.
Does that mean that we forget? Does that mean that we aren’t careful around the offender? It would be great if we could completely forget, but we are not always able to do that. Some pains leave scars we will have forever. Even Jesus has scars.
The Bible teaches us to live in peace with everyone…as far as it depends on us. That means that some people either won’t want to live in peace with us or aren’t able to live in peace with us. We need to be careful of those people.
Paul warned Timothy to be on guard against a man named Alexander the metal worker. Timothy was not to treat that guy with open arms and unreserved trust; he was supposed to be careful.
There may be times when we need to set boundaries between ourselves and a serial offender. Sin has consequences. And while we must forgive everyone who sins against us, it doesn’t mean that we have to open ourselves up recklessly to be hurt again and again.
John 2:23-24 says, “Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Festival, many people saw the signs he was performing and believed in his name. But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all people.”
Jesus was careful with who He entrusted Himself to, and there are times when we need to do the same.
Forgiveness is not foolishness. Mercy is not madness. And boundaries are not a sign of a bitter heart. It is wise to be careful in the midst of the obedience to forgive.
Prayer: Lord Jesus, help me to be careful of toxic relationships. If someone is determined to cause me harm, help me to put up safe boundaries. They still may get through and cause me harm, so help me to always have a posture of forgiveness. Thank you that you are my great protector and my strong shield. I trust in You always. Amen.
Reflection: Is there someone who seems determined to keep hurting you? What kind of boundaries do you need to have in place so that you can still be kind to them while protecting your heart?
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