Love itself may be at stake. If we are unable to forgive one another, we will not be able to love.
Perhaps this is why we can declare with confidence that God is love; it is because, first, God is forgiving.
With so much at risk, God will see to it that love does not leave room for resentment. Instead, God will lead in the cause of mercy.
Then he said to her, “Your sins are forgiven.” But those who were at the table with him began to say among themselves, “Who is this who even forgives sins?” And he said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
Jesus looked into the eyes of this woman and said, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.” God’s forgiveness in our lives creates space for peace. In the same way, when we forgive our neighbors, when we practice forgiveness, we are able to create space for peace and renewal of life.
Do you ever have a hard time sleeping when you’re in the middle of a big fight with a friend? Or have you felt the physical reality of the phrase, “What a weight off my shoulders!” after you and a friend forgive each other? So much of our beings is weighted down when we do not accept God’s unconditional forgiveness, and when we do not practice forgiveness with others.
Within the gift of forgiveness, and new peace-filled space, we are able to move forward, no longer stagnant and rooted in brokenness. We are able to move towards reconciliation, towards being in right relationship with our sisters and brothers. Within forgiveness we experience the fullness of new life.
God of peace, who walked and lived on this earth displaying peace through Jesus, thank you for the deep-spirited peace you extend to me. May I look to Jesus as I practice forgiveness in my life, and may I speak peace to the lives of those I meet today. Amen.
There's a gate just ahead, inviting you to pass through. It is marked "Forgiveness." It leads the way to acceptance, confirmation, recognition, being embraced and held. It takes you down the pathway that brings you love.
Reach out and open easily the latch. Step lightly through the gate's portal. Our forgiving God welcomes you there.