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Wednesday, September 29 2021
Rend Your Heart

Week 39 - #Prepare “Forgive”

“Rend Your Heart"

Ephesians 4:32: "Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."

Micah 7:18: "Who is a God like you, who pardons sin and forgives the transgression of the remnant of his inheritance? You do not stay angry forever but delight to show mercy."

Joel 2:13: "Rend your heart and not your garments. Return to the Lord your God, for he is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and abounding in love, and he relents from sending calamity."

Acts 3:19: "Repent, then, and turn to God, so that your sins may be wiped out, that times of refreshing may come from the Lord.”

I know many reading this have heard the proverb, “it is easier to give than receive.”

I’m wondering if this same “giving and receiving” pattern holds true for you reading this when it comes to forgiveness?

At least in my head I believe at this point in my life I am more readily willing to give forgiveness than to receive.

As I take a personal inventory today, I cannot think of anyone I need to forgive. But, pausing in reflection, allowing myself to go into a deeper contemplation, I would no doubt be able to think of many I have caused strife to those crossing my path.

In some situations requiring forgiveness, in my own simple mind, I have often rationalized, time has healed their pain. So instead of humbling myself, I deny the opportunity of a possible reconciliation for all in these cases.

Why is it so difficult for me to receive forgiveness?

For one thing, it means I have to admit to myself, and then to others, somehow I was wrong! Then there is the struggle with this idea of humility, and the thought of confessing to another, with no guarantee of receiving another’s forgiveness.

You see, in the “giving" of forgiveness, we’re still in control, but in the “asking" of forgiveness we are acknowledging what goes against our human nature to “surrender.”

DADs, why does it seem to be easier to ask God for forgiveness, than our own friends, family, and even strangers we have hurt along the way?

Why are we more afraid of the wrath we imagine we might receive from others, more than revealing our failings to God?

Maybe it's our pride getting in the way? Maybe because we know God already knows our every move? Or that we see His unconditional love everyday?

I do not know the answer, but He does.

In Ephesians 4:32, Paul reminds us all, both "giving and receiving" and to “be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

DADs, if we are truly living, we will find ourselves in both circumstances. At some point we all will need to forgive, while other times we will need forgiveness. In our preparation for forgiving, whether giving or receiving, we must be “kind and compassionate.”

A gracious giver. A gracious receiver!

Who do you need to forgive today?

From whom do you need to seek forgiveness?

DADs, let us begin today towards our preparation of forgiveness, by heeding the instructions of the Old Testament prophet Joel, to:

"Rend your heart and not your garments,” - Joel 2:13

To God be the glory!

DADs “get in the game”…

Today is game day…and so is every day…

God gives you! So…C’mon Men Suit Up!


**Today we prepare to“Forgive.” Next week we will consider how critical it is to prepare to“Relent."

Note: *For this new year of 2021, the combination of my age (understanding my own fragile mortality), this current and ongoing global pandemic, and most recently the personal loss I’ve experienced of one of my students, has amplified the need to land on one word...#Prepare.

In this "pursuit to prepare" I am determined to dedicate the 52 weeks of 2021 blogging every Week about one aspect of preparation God lays on my heart.

As mentioned in week 1, the word “prepare” means “to establish, fix, or apply.” It conveys the idea of deliberate effort over a prolonged period of time.

Posted by: Dr. Jeff Springer AT 05:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email