Today’s post comes from Chris Pipes, Connect Groups Minister at C3.
Today’s Reading: Proverbs 17
Today’s Key Scripture: Proverbs 17:9 (NLT) “Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.”
If you are a human being and live with other human beings, then the probability of you being hurt, wounded or offended by another human being is 100%. Nobody is exempt from hurt. Ever since sin entered the world in the Garden of Eden, we’ve been faced with the choice to either forgive or not forgive others.
I’ve been hurt many times, even from close friends, and without fail I’ve always had to choose whether I was going to hang on to the hurt or let it go. I wish I could tell you in every situation that I chose to forgive, but unfortunately I didn’t. I buried the hurt in my heart, chose not to forgive and instead of things getting better…they got bitter. The love I had for the person waned and quickly declined towards hatred. I’m not proud of this decision, but I did learn my lesson.
Proverbs 17:9 says, “Love prospers when a fault is forgiven, but dwelling on it separates close friends.” When I read this verse, it reminded me of a T-shirt from back in the day that said, “LOVE WINS.” I like that. When we choose to forgive others, no matter what, love wins over hate. We have this misconception that when we are wronged in order for us to “win,” we must hold on to our hurt because somehow we win. The fact is…we don’t win and they don’t win. We both lose.
God is calling us to forgive, to let it go and to let love win. This kind of love isn’t natural but rather supernatural. God loved us first by choosing to forgive us even while we were sinners. That’s crazy to me! Even with all the knowledge of my past, present and future sins, He chose to forgive and love me. It’s because of that love we can be in relationship.
If you have been hurt or offended by a close friend or loved one, let me encourage you to love them by forgiving them. It may not be easy at first, but in the long run you’ll be thankful that you did.
Prayer Focus: Thank you, Heavenly Father, for your love and forgiveness. Help me to learn how to forgive others when they hurt me and love them as Christ loves them. Thank you for your wisdom that you pour out on my life through your Word and continue to show me how to become more like you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.