She ignored me and I felt abandoned.
They didn’t listen to me, and I felt helpless.
They didn’t keep their promise, and I felt betrayed.
She didn’t call me back, and I felt resentment.
They ridiculed my child, and I felt rage.
He slighted me, and I felt inadequate.
They excluded me, and I felt dismissed.
Three offenses, four….
They all wounded me, hurt me, and disappointed me.
And I felt lost and alone, until I raise my eyes.
There you are.
Your body, ravaged by the torture of man, hangs upon the cross. And as you look down to me, you see me. You search me. You discern my thoughts. And you understand.
And you say:
Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing.
New International Version, Luke 23:34
This is divine love.
Your crucified body, nailed mercilessly to the cross, not only reveals how you forgive and pardon your slanderers, your murderers, and your enemies, but how you love them and how you love me.
The offenses and the sin our Lord and Savior suffered and took for his own on our behalf, humble me. When I focus on those who hurt me and slighted me, my love for others stops short because of my human selfishness and weakness.
Alone, in my own power and thought, how may I forgive?
I cannot. My thoughts solely center upon me.
How may I forgive?
Only through Jesus.
He loved me.
He loved you.
He loved our offenders – to the end.
On our behalf, Jesus, the son of God, took every bit of rage, jealousy, rejection, resentment, inadequacy, loss, and sin, and offered his life and his love to save us.
This is the wondrous, beyond-comprehension love of our Savior.
He sees our pain.
He took our pain.
He released us from our pain – to life, to freedom, and to love.
Take a moment and give your hurts and offenses to Jesus.
Jesus sees you.
Jesus knows you.
Jesus loves you.
And Jesus forgives the offenses of us all.
Amen and Amen.