Monday, March 30, 2009

My World was Fixing to be Rocked

"Purified hearts are worth the risk of harsh realities." (Beth Moore in Living Beyond Yourself)

As I shared with you last week, God spoke some huge things to this heart two weekends ago. On the Saturday afternoon session, Dr. Bruce touched on forgiveness and how unforgiveness is a sin. Oh boy I was NOT ready for what was going to happen.

First let me remind you that we were surrounded by women who have experienced horrible, unspeakable trauma. The heaviness of that settled on me when this particular session started. I knew because we had shared lunch in the "green room" with the speaker, that the afternoon session would be hard for us. Even with the inside scoop, I wasn't quite ready for what I experienced.

I was reminded that making the choice to NOT forgive ANYONE of ANYTHING is S.I.N. He had us read Matthew 18:21-35 which is the passage of the Unforgiving Servant. Remember? Servant #1 owes the King 10,000 Talents (about 20 years wages for a laborer). The King wants the account settled. Servant #1 couldn't pay and begs the King for mercy. The King grants it and releases the servant.

Servant #1 leaves and runs into Servant #2. Servant #2 owes #1 100 denarii (1 denarii is about a days wage). #2 just like #1, begged for mercy and patience BUT. #1 refuses to grant it to #2 and has him thrown into prison until he could pay his debt. Story coming back to you now?

The King got wind of what #1 had done and boy was he livid. #1 found himself in the Kings presence where he was severely reprimanded. The King even called #1 wicked for not showing mercy when mercy had been shown to him.

Verse 34 tells us what the King did next...

"And in anger his master delivered him to the jailers, until he should pay all his debt."

It was at this point that I became very aware just how serious unforgiveness is. See that word "jailers"? The Greek meaning for that word is: torturers. What do torturers do?

They torment.

When we make the choice to NOT forgive any offensive, after a time...God releases us, or as Dr. Bruce said it..He throws us to be tormented. I think the best way to describe this is that God removes His hand of protection.

As we moved on, we talked about what a person who doesn't forgive looks like. We heard words like, resentment, bitterness, anger, and hatred. Eventually an unforgiving person lives a life of vengeance. I don't know about you but to me, those are pretty accurate descriptions of a person who is being tormented.

Dr. Bruce then had us take a piece of paper and then pray "God show me who I need to forgive."

We were then to record every name that came into our mind. It was shocking. I'm ashamed to tell you that my list was much longer than I thought it should be.

What came next was hard. I'll share that with you next time.


colorfulwoman said...

Hey Stephanie! I have just spent some time catching up on your blog...what a blessing! I am praying for your "glorious impossible" to make your "impossible glorious"! I am thinking over your weekend you discussed here and smiling over your "simple pleasures" :) Blessings to you sweet siesta!

Haley said...

Wow. That's some hard stuff to hear. Thank you for this post.

Cindy said...

What an awesome post. I have been guilty in the past of being unforgiving. But it just devours you. So the Lord pointed out that I really had no choice but to forgive.

Lindsee Lou said...

Wow, that is good stuff. Thanks so much for sharing! I can't wait to hear what is next! Have a great Tuesday, friend!

Leah said...

Oh Steph, this forgiveness thing is brutal, isnt' it? I try my hardest, every day, to ask God to show me ANY unforgiveness in my heart. It is surely easier to deal with it on a daily basis rather than having it all pile up. Eager to hear more of what the Lord did in your heart.

Love ya,


Fran said...

Oh Stephanie...that was a mighty powerful word!!! My gosh how did you swallow it all??? I can't get my mind around that weekend on your behalf!!

Forgivenss is key isn't it? I'll go back and read this again. Right now.

connorcolesmom said...

Oh goodness that is a good word
Forgiveness is hard and I often forget that it is a SIN not to forgive
Looking forward to the rest...
BTW: guess what my word verification is ICSIN - NO LIE!!
I might need to make a list myself...
Love you

BethAnne said...

Cant wait to hear the rest.....

Cheryl said...

Can't wait to hear the rest!

Got my cd! Loving it!!!!!!