It's Monday (12:01am actually and my first scheduled post!) and time to share my weekly 2010 Word List thoughts. Last night's post was to catch up from last week! So, to begin!
I have been writing down notes over the last week or so and my notebook is barely legable to others, but is cram packed with thoughts, verses and notes about forgiveness. As it - forgiveness - is such an important thing to do, and a big act to consider for the first month of a new year, it's certainly worth the while!
The dictionary meaning of forgiveness is –
1. act of forgiving; state of being forgiven.
2. disposition or willingness to forgive.
To forgive is –
–verb (used with object) 1. to grant pardon for or remission of (an offense, debt, etc.); absolve.
2. to give up all claim on account of; remit (a debt, obligation, etc.).
3. to grant pardon to (a person).
4. to cease to feel resentment against: to forgive one's enemies.
5. to cancel an indebtedness or liability of: to forgive the interest owed on a loan.
–verb (used without object) 6. to pardon an offense or an offender.
The Strong’s Lexicon shows these meaning and explanations. In Hebrew – cliychah - forgiveness is to forgive, pardon, spare. In Greek – aphesis - it means deliverance, liberty, remission and freedom. What I find really exciting about looking into the Hebrew and Greek meanings of this word, is that the Greek word for forgiveness comes from aphemi, which is to send forth, to go. Delving further in I find that aphemi comes from apo, which means after, ago, before, separation, departure, cessation, completion, reversal, etc. These meanings just go to show that words are not just words, after all; they are a wealth of knowledge to those who delve deeply enough into them! And what knowledge did I glean from these words? In my mind, this means “as it was before”.
God wants our life to be “as it was before”.
Now, I can fully relate to this. In 2009, I endured a couple of rough patches that turned my life upside down...on the inside. On the outside, I didn’t fare too well, but the damage and the hurt affected me more spiritually, mentally and emotionally than anything else. At the time I had absolutely no idea how I was going to move forward or how I was ever going to get passed what had happened. But I did...thanks to God and some wonderful friends who prayed for me and fed me His Word to sustain me.
Their prayers and His Word was what did it; these things taught me that my peace comes from Him alone as He surpasses all level of understanding. This led me to rely on Him for my peace, in my absolute weakness. And I was weak. I didn’t understand what was going on or how I was supposed to deal with the hurt I was feeling. Would I be able to move on? Would I be able to forgive those who really had no idea that they had hurt me so badly, or at all?
Yes and yes. I have been able to move on and I have been able to forgive. And what did this forgiveness do for me? It gave me release, peace and it has allowed me to live my life “as it was before”. I have been able to sustain this new understanding of forgiveness, which has benefited me in many areas of my life. One passage of scripture that has helped me immensely, and that I have used as power verses – medicine, if you like – is Proverbs 4:20-23 (KJV) –
20 My son, attend to my words; incline thine ear unto my sayings.
21 Let them not depart from thine eyes; keep them in the midst of thine heart.
22 For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh.
23 Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.
Verse 23 is such a blessing and one that I have memorised and remind myself of often to keep my mind focussed on what the real issues are.
Please consider your thoughts on forgiveness; not only of others, but also of self. It will allow you to live “as it was before”. You may not forget all the hurt that occurred, but you will be able to think on it with God’s view; that we are all deserving of forgiveness, we all do not know what we are doing at times, and that we must forgive.
Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for the breakthrough that You and Your Word offered me during my painful times last year. Thank you that I have been able to learn from those experiences and move on; to be able to have it “as it was before”. I praise You for Your grace, and for taking on my pain and making me feel whole again. In Jesus’ Wonderful Name, Amen