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Archive for the ‘Forgiveness’ Category

What an incredible story of forgiveness and grace. A thief in Springfield, FL stole thousands of dollars of equipment from the church. After the pastor went looking for the stuff it was all returned. Apparently he was convicted by what he did, gave it all back and then even came to church on Sunday. The church forgave him and he joined!

Read the whole story.

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If you’re not familiar with Peacemakers Ministry, you should be. Ken Sande’s book,The Peacemaker, is the best introduction to the topic of biblical peacemaking available. It is a must read for every pastor, church member and Christian.
They recently hosted a conference on the topic of “Forgiveness,” featuring keynote speakers Josh Harris, Thabiti Anyabwile, Ken Sande, and Chris Brauns (author ofUnpacking Forgiveness: Biblical Answers for Complex Questions and Deep Wounds).

 

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From Vitamin Z:

I’ll break it down really simple.  Ask yourself this question:  How often do the words, “I’m sorry.  Will you please forgive me?” come out of your mouth towards your spouse?

Not very often?

If not, either your spouse is enabling your sin, you have a low view of your sin, or you are too insecure in your identity in Christ to confess.

I could easily say that the consistent theme that I have seen in marriages that fall apart (or are completely dysfunctional) is the inability to name sin and repent.  But believing the Gospel should compel us to see our sin (that is what Jesus died for right?) and if we believe that Jesus had to die for my sin then why would it be a big shocker that I would have to name that same sinful state to my spouse as part of the means by which I kill it.

Embrace the need to repent and do so verbally to your mate.  The blessing upon your marriage will be huge.

Related Posts:
Repentance
Sin Destroys Peace
More on Repentance
“I’m sorry, I was wrong, will you please forgive me?”

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From Molly Friesen at Route 5:9

I’ve been reading through Paul Tripp’s book What Did You Expect, and he has some thoughts on forgiveness that I thought were very profound.  Having laid out some of the blessings/benefits of forgiveness, Tripp asks, “Why don’t people just forgive?”  He then points out that “the sad reality is that there is short-term, relationally destructive power in refusing to forgive. Holding onto our spouse’s wrongs gives us the upper hand in our relationship” (page 90).

I think it’s worth listing the “dark benefits” that Tripp delineates so that we can examine ourselves and find where we are seeking to reap those benefits rather than taking the healthy, God-glorifying, servant-hearted approach of forgiveness.

1.  Debt is power.  There is power in having something to hold over another’s head.  There is power in using a person’s weakness and failure against him or her. In moments when we want our own way, we pull out some wrong against our spouse as our relational trump card.

2. Debt is identity. Holding onto our spouse’s sin, weakness, and failure makes us feel superior to our spouse. It allows us to believe that we are more righteous and mature than our spouse. We fall into the pattern of getting our sense of self not by what God has called us to be and do but by comparing ourselves to our spouse. This pattern plays into the self-righteousness that is the struggle of every sinner.

3. Debt is entitlement. Because of all our spouse’s wrongs against us, he or she owes us. Carrying our spouse’s wrongs makes us feel deserving and therefore comfortable with being self-focused and demanding. ‘After all I have had to endure in relationship with you, don’t I deserve…?”

4. Debt is weaponry. The sins and failures that our spouse has done against us that we still carry around with us are like a loaded gun; it is very tempting to pull them out and use them when we are angry. When our wife has hurt us in some way, it is very tempting to hurt her back by throwing in her face just how evil and immature she is.

5. Debt puts us in God’s position. It is the one place that we must never be, but it is also a position that all of us have put ourselves in. We are not the judge of our spouse. We are not the one who should dispense consequences for our spouse’s sin. It is not our job to make sure he feels the appropriate amount of guilt for what he has done. But it is very tempting to ascend to God’s throne and to make ourselves judge. (What Did You Expect, 90-91)

Tripp concludes, “This is nasty stuff.”  I agree!

Also, check out her follow up post, “Forgiveness Is an Investment: What It Costs.”

HT: Thabiti Anyabwile

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