By Pastor Vinnie Cappetta
"Forgiveness Reflects the Character of God"
Can you imagine if you missed some house payments and your mortgage company decided to foreclose on you and sell the house at an auction? What would you do? You might write a letter explaining your financial situation and stating why the mortgage company should give you more time to pay. What if the company decided that because of your financial hardship they would forgive the debt and bring your balance to zero?
Part of your financial hardship stemmed from the fact that you loaned several thousand dollars to a friend who needed to buy a car but never paid you back. After being forgiven of hundreds of thousands of dollars by your mortgage company, what if you sued your friend for repayment of his loan to you?
God in his loving-kindness has forgiven you of all your sins. You could never pay Him back for all that you owe Him.
The question is, “Will you extend this kind of forgiveness to the people around you?”
Imagine how it grieves the Holy Spirit to see us unwilling to forgive others when we have been forgiven so much.
Years ago, I spoke with a member in the church where I was a member. She alleged that a mentor of mine had wronged her in many ways. In fact, she was in the process of bringing a lawsuit against him. Not only did she have a sour attitude toward him, she wanted everyone else to have the same opinion of him. She began telling me stories of how my mentor wasn’t really interested in me but that he was more interested in the money that was left to me when one of my loved ones passed away. Listening to her stories, I began to wonder whether or not she was telling the truth and whether or not I could forgive my mentor if what she was saying was the truth.
Paul says that we are sealed unto the day of redemption. This means that we are identified as God’s very own possessions. How could I harbor ill will against my mentor? Jesus gave me to power to do what I could not do on my own… to forgive. He did this so that others could see a reflection of the character of our God in me.
Go deeper by reading Ephesians 4:30 and Matthew 18:21-35