Thought of the Day February 12, 2018 Forgiveness

By 10:07 AM

"There are two sides to forgiveness: giving and receiving. Although at first sight giving seems to be harder, it often appears that we are not able to offer forgiveness to others because we have not been able fully to receive it. Only as people who have accepted forgiveness can we find the inner freedom to give it. Why is receiving forgiveness so difficult? It is very hard to say, "Without your forgiveness I am still bound to what happened between us. Only you can set me free." That requires not only a confession that we have hurt somebody but also the humility to acknowledge our dependency on others. Only when we can receive forgiveness can we give it." (Henri Nouwen) It is true that many people have a hard time in believing and accepting God's merciful forgiveness. Why? First, they believe that they do not deserve to be forgiven. That is true to an extent, but mercy is not something owed to a person. It is a pure gift from another. Second, they also believe that they have to earn forgiveness by first making up for the wrong done. That is a diabolical lie, because no one but Jesus, could offer what is necessary for the forgiveness of our sins. Third, down deep, they know to accept forgiveness means to extend forgiveness to others and they are not ready.

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