Saturday, March 20, 2010

Devotional Snapshot 54 - Grudges

"It is impossible to risk your life to make others glad in God if you are an unforgiving person. If you are wired to see other people's faults and failures and offenses, and treat then roughly, you will not take risks for their joy. This wiring--and it is universal in all human beings--must be dismantled. " Don't Waste Your Life John Piper

Ephesians 4:32 "And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you."

We were disagreeing once again. While the arguing was in process a number of old offenses popped up easily in my mind. Since the brain is so close to the tongue, it did not take long for one of those offenses to snake its way out. As soon as the fang of unforgiveness released its poison in the one I loved she was stunned into silence. The momentary quiet filled me with remorse. My true self had surfaced and I hated what it was. After a few long seconds she said tearfully: "I thought you had forgiven me for that years ago."

O, Lord, I thought I had, too. I had said the right words at the time. I had wore the right mask. Lord Jesus, my heart is so hard to change. My outer can wear a smile and sound warm and loving as quick as I put on lip stick, but the inner remains a cold stone pot filling up with "injustices" done to me and today some of the simmering grudges spilled out. My hot words burned us both.

I'm sorry, God. I'm sorry, loved one. To be a forgiving person as Christ is forgiving--that would be refreshing, freeing, a release! To keep that simmering pot of grudges on the front burner takes a lot of time and heat energy. One must stir it constantly and then other joyful activities are neglected. Going to bed at night becomes a time to mull over the list of wrongs. Sleep will not come easy. Free me, Lord, from the poison of unforgiveness.

Take time to ask God if you are harboring old grudges and ask Him to give you the strength to let go. Pray the Lord will help you to not bring it up even when you are angry at the person.

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