It is refreshing to know God forgave me. I can’t speak for anyone else, but I needed a Savior. I needed someone who would love me when I didn’t know how to love anyone—and wasn’t even able to love myself.
Interesting how Paul writes to the Ephesians on life. Ephesians 4:31-5:2 says, “Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you… 5:1 Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.”
When I looked at these scriptures I had to pause. How do I get rid of all the bitter, rage, anger, brawling, and slander along with every form of malice? To get rid of the pain that my past has caused… and then become “kind and compassionate” to others… oh and then the F Word arises… that word is major; we don’t like to say it, let alone do it: FORGIVE?
It is true, that grouped together—they are only a couple of “words” (four totaled) that cause us a life time of work. Those words, “just as God does” are life changing for me, and can be for you. You see, it is impossible to forgive and get rid of all the pain and hurt without first looking at the example God gives us.
The examples of how we need to change are seen throughout the Bible—people who look like you and me, people who have also hurt others and felt the thorns of bitter pain. But, they made a choice… they looked to the cross for their freedom, fresh start, forgiveness, and faith.
God doesn’t say that ridding yourself of the pain and bitterness will be easy, but He does provide a road map so we may study to see people that have struggled and chosen step-by-step to walk this way. The answer to What Would Jesus Do? is found in every page we turn of the Bible and it’s wrapped in love.
We know what Jesus did.
Now the question that remains: What will you do?
Photo by João Silas