Are you one to forgive quickly, or does it take a while for you to get over a wrong done you? Consider the story of this man who wrote the following short letter to his neighbor:
"Dear Frank. We've been neighbors for six tumultuous years. When you borrowed my tiller, you returned it in pieces. When I was sick, you blasted rap music. And when your dog went to the bathroom all over my lawn, you laughed. I could go on, but I'm certainly not one to hold grudges. So I am writing this letter to tell you that your house is on fire. Cordially, Bob. We certainly have times in our lives in which we felt we were wronged, and even though we don't think we hold grudges we get that little satisfaction within us when the guilty party that has wronged us, has wrong done to him. Scripture tells us: "All bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander must be removed from you, along with all malice. And be kind, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ." Ephesians 4:31-32 The problem with Bob, is that, even though he considered himself nonjudgmental, he revealed an unforgiving heart toward his neighbor. Although this is a "tongue-in-cheek" story, the sadness of it all is that it is all too common, even among Christians. Perhaps it's time we evaluated our thoughts, come to grips with the motives of our hearts, and stopped making excuses for our actions that do not line up with Scripture. Who knows, we might just be able to turn the heart of our neighbor to Christ, but most certainly we will be able to stand stronger before our Lord, with a heart of love, and not unforgiveness.
Lord, please evaluate our hearts and change them as needed to be more like You. I pray for each of us who call ourselves Christian, that we will develop through You, a clean heart, a heart of forgiveness and love. I pray also today for: The Rodriguez family, for their loss; for Loren, who has uncontrollable asthma. I pray for Gavin, our military who continue to suffer loss of life protecting others; for Sandy, and Kim and Allen, Bill; I pray for Mike S., Loren, Barbara, Jackie Ann, Cynthia, Carolyn, Rheba, Harriet, Ada, Peggy. Lord please change our country by Your love, for I ask it in Jesus name