One of my fathers favorite comedians was Flip Wilson. Flip Wilson would do a bit "The Devil Made Me Do It" Often times his character Geraldine would do something she shouldn't and then tell her husband with an elaborate story that "The Devil Made Me Do It" The stories were hysterical and if you've never had an opportunity to hear or see Flip Wilson make sure you look up some of his sketches.
I bring Flip Wilson up because I think about how often we do something we actually regret, not like the Geraldine character trying to explain why she bought a dress.
Do you have pain you hold on to? And do you believe God truly forgives or is it difficult to imagine God forgiving you for the mistakes you make?
We can read the many verses in the Bible that talk about forgiveness, but isn't it difficult to believe that God can forgive us when we struggle not only forgiving others but ourselves as well?
Is it possible that when we learn to be understanding, when we judge less and accept more, when we stop the gossip and recognize the beauty in all people, even when they make a mistake that we can be more present to the love God provides in us and others. That maybe we can then learn to stop judging and condemning ourselves and those around us and know that God does forgive us and in turn we can be open to do what God asks of us and forgive others.
Each Sunday, you most likely pray the Lord's Prayer in church. But do you pray verse 14-15.
The older I get the more in tune I have become to the notion that I do not understand or know why someone does what they do. There is usually a bigger story than the one I know and most importantly it is not up to me to be the judge, jury and executioner. I have made my fair share of mistakes and missteps in life. I would like others to forgive me, and it is my goal to forgive others and to judge less. It many times may not be easy, but don't we all recognize - it's the right thing to do. So, take a moment today. Forgive those who have hurt you or someone you love and then take a moment to forgive yourself for what you have done to hurt yourself or someone else. And remember that - God has already forgiven you!
Wishing you Grace, Peace & Healthy Living,