This week guest blogger Cathy Bryant shares with us.
How would you fill in the blank to the title of this post?
I think we’d all be surprised with the various responses, because other topics have the tendency to creep into our definition of forgiveness. While some of these topics are related, others come from misconceptions about what forgiveness truly is.
For example, many think forgiveness means reconciliation must take place. While that is the ideal, it’s not necessarily true. Both parties have to be willing in the reconciliation process. Sometimes forgiveness requires forgiving in spite of the other party’s lack of willingness to be reconciled.
Another misconception about forgiveness is that it requires a sincere apology from the offender. Remember as a child how your mom would make you say you were sorry–even when you didn’t mean it? In all honesty, true forgiveness is unconditional. We can’t have the attitude of, “I’ll forgive him/her when they…” Why?
Because Christ placed no conditions on His forgiveness of us when He said from the cross: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.” ~Luke 23:34
As I studied the concept of forgiveness in preparation for the next Miller’s Creek Novel, A BRIDGE UNBROKEN, I was convicted by this thought:
Sobering thought, isn’t it?
When Alexander Pope first penned the words “To err is human; to forgive, divine” he spoke absolute truth. True forgiveness goes against our human nature. We want justice, not mercy–at least until we’re the ones in need of grace. It takes the spark of the divine within us to realize the importance of forgiveness and to actually carry it out.
In my very humble opinion, an understanding true forgiveness is crucial to our comprehension of what Christ did for us on the cross. For in that one act of love and sacrifice, He released us from all our offenses–past, present, and future.
Lord, may I go and do likewise.
Cathy Bryant loves spinning tales about the fictional town of Miller’s Creek, Texas–where folks are friendly, the iced tea is sweet, and Mama Beth’s front porch beckons. Her heart’s desire is to write heart-stirring stories of life-changing grace. When she’s not writing, you’ll find her rummaging through thrift stores or up to her elbows in yet another home improvement project in the mountain cabin she shares with her minister husband of over thirty years. You can find out more about Cathy and the Miller’s Creek Novels at http://www.CatBryant.com or at the links below:
Letting go to build a bridge…
Dakota Kelly wants her painful past to disappear. A plan to start afresh is derailed when she co-inherits her late grandfather’s farm with Chance Johnson, the man responsible for the scars on her heart. But Chance isn’t the only ghost from the past. Someone else is out to get her and will stop at nothing to get what he wants. Will Chance and Dakota lay aside their grudges to restore the old farmhouse and bridge, or will evil forces sabotage their attempt at forgiveness?
Releases April 2014
Available at Amazon.com
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