Is There Anyone You Refuse To Forgive?
Tuesday of the First Week of Lent
Scriptural Readings: Isaiah 55:10-11; Psalm 34:4-5, 6-7, 16-17, 18-19; Matthew 6:7-15
My dear encountered couples:
No matter how good a Lent we make in regard to church going, self-denial, and good works, Jesus reminds us of something we must do all year round. Forgive those who offend us! If we are not willing to forgive, or to at least try to forgive, all else becomes an exercise in futility. For nothing else will obtain for us God’s forgiveness, which we are all in very great need of.
But I thought God is always forgiving, that there is nothing he would hesitate to forgive in anyone. You think correctly. The worst of us can expect nothing but the best of treatment from our all loving God. The forgiveness of God is at this very moment being showered upon every man and woman on earth, and will continue to do so without letup, the sun might not shine at night, and the moon during the day, but the forgiveness of God shines from the heavens every single moment of every night and day upon every sinner, no matter how wicked. BUT! And this “BUT” is something we must all be sure to remember. Not every person is guaranteed to receive God’s forgiveness.
Though the sun does shine for a good portion of the day, if there are clouds in the sky its rays don’t reach the earth. Smog, fog, and thick overcast can make day seem like night. The sun still shines but barriers keep its light from reaching us. Same with God’s forgiveness. When we refuse to forgive all who have offended us, when we refuse to even try to forgive, our hearts harden, and God’s forgiveness can’t get in. It is like we shut the doors of our souls and double lock them. God can pour out all the forgiveness that is in him, but none of it gets to us.
“If you forgive the faults of others,” Jesus said, “your heavenly Father will forgive you yours. If you do not forgive others, neither will your Father forgive you.” The next time we have a dark day, recall his words. Is there anyone you refuse to forgive?