Well, I’m a day late. My saving grace is that our topic is… well, you kind of HAVE to let it slide now, don’t you?
This IS a great topic. I’m tipping my hat to you, Chelsey. Really, I am. Right now.
As I sit to type, I think I’ve only got one thought to share…
Forgiveness is like a fantasy coming true. It’s every person’s dream becoming real. For who hasn’t wished to be in the “Butterfly Effect” at one time or another? Who hasn’t felt the need to go back and right a wrong? To change a course?
Everyday carries dozens of instances of “I’d do THAT another away if I could”.
But we can’t.
A simple example: I’ve often visited with someone who felt like he/she couldn’t effectively voice their thoughts. My suggestion: “You just fire away. See how I respond, and if you didn’t nail it, we’ll push ‘delete’ and go at it again.”
Wouldn’t you love it if forgiveness could work that cleanly–just take you back before the blunder? But that’s what it DOES, isn’t it? Isn’t that the point–to get a ‘do-over’?
No. Not really.
The beauty of forgiveness is that it does MORE than that.
It doesn’t merely take us back to life before our fall, back to that un-screwed-up state. Forgiveness is so powerful that it actually takes us to a NEW realm, one beyond what we had before we blew it. By travelling through the failure and hurt, by being forced into humble and open confession of the wrong, by seeking restoration, and having another place their forgiveness upon us, we actually come out somewhere we’d have never arrived at otherwise.
This isn’t an attempt to confuse things, to get a little “let’s go on sinning so that forgiveness may abound” thing going. This truth simply highlights the power of forgiveness for both seekers and offerers.
Forgiveness opens new doors and ignites new flames; it is proof that the Kingdom is real and among us–that purity is more powerful than sin, that death cannot defeat life, that condemnation truly is not the law of the land, and that even the blackest darkness cannot withstand even the simplest source of light.
And that IS good stuff!