“Free us for joyful obedience through Jesus Christ our Lord.” We pray these words each time we gather around the table for Holy Communion. Yet so many of us remain bound by resentment, grudges, and our inability to forgive ourselves for our past wrongs. Offering forgiveness is just as much about releasing our own chains as it is the ones of those who have wronged us. I am not free to love and serve if I am weighed down by resentment and anger. The one who wronged us may never seek our forgiveness, but we can release ourselves from the situation by offering it to God.
There is also the misconception that we have to have our stuff all together before God will accept us. Nothing could be further from the truth. God loves and accepts us just as we are, and invites us to let go of our past guilt and struggles and find a new path that allows us to really experience life. And God has not only done this for us, but offers grace and forgiveness to those we may not view as worthy. The truth is that none of us are -- or ever could be -- worthy enough on our own. We all need forgiveness and a savior.
Questions to consider:
Are there people in your life whom you have been unable to forgive? Will you offer this situation to God to help release that anger and grudge? Is there something in your life for which you can’t forgive yourself? Be assured that God is willing to wipe the slate clean and free you for joyful obedience.