How many of us have voiced the prayer at some time that our desire is to go deeper in God? Our spiritual journey began when we were born again. Our on-going journey in our earthly passage is where we recover lost ground with the Holy Spirit as our Guide.
One of the biggest stumbling blocks is unforgiveness. If I do not forgive others, God does not forgive me. There is no forgiveness for unforgiveness. In the Lord’s prayer, Jesus taught us how to pray, Matthew 6:12, “Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.” Jesus continued this teaching in verses 14-15, “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.” Jesus made it very plain and simple to understand.
There are so many consequences in life for unforgiveness. It causes a root of bitterness that will quickly grow producing many ugly, painful fruits affecting a person’s physical and spiritual health. Have you inspected the contents of your trash bin lately? Just lift the lid and see who you have placed, or conveniently filed, in there. Unforgiveness! Offence! It matters not if others place me in their bin, but I must never place them in mine. The voice of self justification arises, “Oh, I love everyone, I do…” To bear testimony of oneself is not a true witness. Jesus taught that he who bears testimony of himself is not true, (John 8:13-18). We all recognise the emotions of love and hate, but what about indifference? Am I guilty? Indifference to people is unacceptable in God’s eyes. It is nothing short of uncaring selfishness and does not reach the Lord’s standard in 1 Corinthians 13.
Forgiveness is an on-going process. Satan is devoted to his job of robbing the saints of God of the ground they have gained in Christ Jesus. Jesus said, speaking of Satan, “The thief comes to steal, to kill and to destroy…” John 10:10. When ground has been gained in forgiveness, do not entertain any lingering thoughts related to the offence that may re-appear at a later date. Do not give the devil that foothold. When God forgives, He forgets and buries the offence at the foot of Calvary. He never exhumes the grave to inspect the corpse of the offence! Calvary gives me pardon for all my sin, past, present and future. In the light of that, how dare I bear a grudge against my fellow man?
In our on-going journey with the Lord, we all seek direction for our lives. Consider this:
SUBJECTION BEFORE DIRECTION.
Jesus taught subjection. Matthew 20:27-28 “..Whoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant. Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister and to give His life a ransom for many.”
Reality and serving has to start in the circumstances I am placed in, at home and at work.
BLOOM WHERE YOU ARE PLANTED, YOU CAN BE “SCENT” WHERE YOU ARE!
I can begin by being the one to listen, instead of telling everyone else what to do. Authority comes out of serving. My “over” comes out of my “under”. Who am I “under” in finality? The guiding direction of the Holy Spirit of God. Someone once said, (so profoundly): “We live our lives to an audience of One.”
Let us continue our joyful journey with our eyes fixed firmly on Him, knowing that our faithful Father God, will finish the work He began in us,(Philippians 1:6) as we humbly submit to His loving hand.