Over the weekend, I had reason to remember the words, “to err is human’. These words are part of a longer proverb, ‘to err is human; to forgive, divine’ and was penned by Alexander Pope in Essay on Criticism. It occurred to me for the first time really, that these words are usually applied to me, when I make a mistake. I am quick to point out my imperfection to others. It is my defense when there is a lapse in judgment. But what happens when someone else needs to hear that from me? Over the weekend someone erroneously assumed I had deliberately done something wrong. Something was wrong, but it was not me and it was not deliberate. Needless to say, I was offended. I was shocked and disappointed that someone would think that of me.‘No one is perfect”, I thought. “I must be given some leeway to make an error”. Here I stand in need of grace, while my heart plots the downfall of my accuser. Such irony! Such audacity! Come closer, a little closer, I want to share a secret with you. Are you ready for this earth-shattering revelation? Romans 3:10 tells us ‘As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one’. Did you get that? This includes me and you. I love my God. He is much kinder, more loving, shows more patience and extends more grace than I ever, ever can. I remember telling my God my side of things. But do you know what He was doing, while I was whining and complaining, He ummm… reminded me of me! “Not me, Lord! I would never falsely accuse anyone”, uhhh…really, Brenda? Do you really want to go there? Romans 3:23 tells us ‘we have all fallen short of the glory of God’. ‘All’ refers to every single person, past, present and future; we all stand in need of forgiveness. We were born in sin, according to Psalms 51:5 ‘Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me’. The starting line of salvation began at the same point for every single Christian. Now that we are saved, as we draw near to the Lord, He molds and shapes us, so that we put on more of His characteristics; such as humility and forgiveness. Forgiveness must be part of a Christian’s life. It is impossible to serve the Lord without forgiveness from the Lord, and from and to others.
Forgiveness becomes easier (not easy, but EASIER) when we:
- Don’t put people on pedestals; people will disappoint us, we will disappoint them. Remember ‘to err is human”; Romans 3:23/ Romans 3;10
- Acknowledge that because we have been forgiven much, therefore we must be prepared to forgive much; Colossians 3:13
- Realize that God has commanded, (not suggested) us to forgive; Luke 6:37/Matthew 6:13
- Understand that forgiveness is necessary in order to live peacefully with others Romans 12:18
- Remember that we usually do that exact same things, sometimes even worse! Matthew 7:4
NO MATTER WHAT THE OFFENSE IS, we must always be ready to forgive if we desire that our Lord forgive us. I know this is easier said than done, but we are not required to do this in our own strength. We have the Holy Spirit. Depending on the gravity of the offense, it does take Supernatural strength to help us forgive. Stay close to the Lord, my friends, always, but even closer when life throws its challenges.
Thank you, thank you, thank you to all who have taken the time to follow the blog. I am humbled by your comments and likes on the posts. May the Lord be honored on this adventure.
Have a blessed day and remember: God’s love is unfailing, unwavering and unconditional.
Do you find it hard to forgive, sometimes? Why?