“Look back on those people who have been instrumental in your life. I want you to bless them. Bring them to Me in prayer. Pray that I might prosper them in all they do, and that they become all they can be in My eyes. Pray that they serve Jesus with all their hearts. Pray this for everyone that I bring to your mind, even those who have hurt you or despitefully used you. Ask for My mercy to come to those who have intentionally harmed you. Wait in My presence until you can be grateful for every person that you have encountered. Take your time. There is no hurry. Over time, as I heal your every wound, I will show you how all of them have a portion in who you are in Me. I will set you free.”
Esther 6:1-3 AMP
1) On that night the king could not sleep; and he ordered that the book of memorable deeds, the chronicles, be brought, and they were read before the king.
2) And it was found written there how Mordecai had told of Bigthana and Teresh, two of the attendants who guarded the door, who had sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.
3) And the king said, What honor or distinction has been given Mordecai for this? Then the king’s servants who ministered to him said, Nothing has been done for him.
Phil 4:13 AMP
I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency].
It’s easy to bless those who have blessed us, but every one of us has had people intentionally or unintentionally bring harm to us through their words or actions. When you live in society, it is unavoidable. How we handle those offenses is what counts. In the world, most reactions to offenses fall into the categories of retaliation, holding unforgiveness of some sort; and leaving hurtful wounds and insurmountable obstacles in the way of healthy relationships. In Christ, however, every offense, past or present, brings opportunity for our growth and healing by His power.
As I was writing this comment, and partly because of a recent conversation with some friends, I was thinking of some short phrases that have helped me place offenses in proper perspective over the years. I wish I could take credit for them, but they have all come from other people, those much wiser than I.
“Lord, flood them with the same mercy you have given me.” This has often brought things into perspective as I think of how much mercy I have asked for because of my own sin towards God and towards others. It has allowed me to remember that we are all in need of the Lord and brings home the thought that we judge others by their actions; we judge ourselves by our intentions, (another borrowed phrase.)
“Forgiveness is the ardent desire to bear the consequences of another person’s sin.” This one is a definition of the heart of Jesus. He saw our future healing and bore the weight of our sins and the sins of others because of our need. Only by His power can we understand that every sin against us gives us the opportunity to see that person’s desperate need for Jesus. By the infused sufficiency of Christ in us, we can understand that it is our privilege to hold that person up before the Lord so he or she might be healed. The act of forgiving then becomes a warfare tool against the real enemy, and an agent for healing in both the offending party and the offended.
Teach me Your ways, Lord,