On Sunday, the pastor reminds of Jesus’ command…to forgive, even if we’re sinned against 7 times each day. And I’m reminded that forgiveness is the birth mark of a Jesus follower. How can the forgiven one not forgive?
Monday morning, I wake and in prayer I’m moved to go ahead and grant forgiveness for the day-forgiving my husband for ways he may disappoint or not be able to meet all my needs and forgiving each of my children for their particular ways of sinning.
And while something feels so right about speaking forgiveness over the day, something feels wrong when I start with their forgiveness, rather than my own.
When Jesus told the disciples to keep forgiving, seven times and then seven times seventy times (490!), they responded by asking for one thing:
The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” Luke 17:3-5
Faith to see what? Jesus knew what they needed to see when He told the story of the unforgiving servant. And don’t I know the necessity of this? I need to first see my own debt, my debt that can’t be counted, to see that infinite debt paid in full by Christ. Without eyes of faith to see my sins counted against Jesus (and not me), I’ll never stop counting the ways I feel wronged, cheated, disappointed, disregarded.
Perhaps this is a good way to start the day-listing the possible 490 things for which I’ll need to forgive, overlook and give grace. But only after I’ve started a list of my own, considered the 490 million ways I’ll fail my perfect Savior in these brief waking moments. Asking first for faith to see all my debt paid down and wiped clean is the only way to prepare for the 490 ways I may feel short changed today.
So, Lord, increase our faith and give us the mark of your followers–able to forgive and forgive and forgive again.