A few weeks ago I looked into the meaning of what love is from 1 Corinthians 13. One attribute of love keeps coming back to me.
Love keeps no record of wrongs, or as I found, love is forgiving.
As the past few weeks have unfolded, we have found ourselves in a bit of a setback with big bro. We have made so much progress and I think that makes going back that much more horrible. This time I am finding myself having much less patience and it occurred to me that maybe I am keeping a record of wrong- and have not been forgiving him.
Now, that’s not saying to forgive, forget and dismiss.
But I am beginning to wonder what would happen if each meltdown/tantrum/issue was dealt with as if it had never happened before. And if he feels discouraged because he keeps stumbling over and getting in trouble for the same thing over and over.
I know I get frustrated with myself having to keep repenting over the same things over and over. Yet Christ offers forgiveness each and every time lovingly. Our slate is wiped clean each time we ask for forgiveness. He keeps no record of wrongs.
We still have consequence for our actions. He is constantly teaching, guiding and correcting us, causing is to change and grow. Sometimes that feels good and sometimes it is painful.
be even-tempered and patient with them,
be content to love them where they are,
persevere with them,
be hopeful, joyful and trusting and unending,
protect them by training them and rejoicing in Truth,
be selfless, modeling for them how to be polite, humble, and forgiving.
That is one tall order. In the throes of life and day to day events mixed with our own emotions can make it seem impossible. I know for me it does. But God’s love can flow through us if we ask him and rely on his strength.
So I begin my week with a mission. I need to deal with big bro moment by moment, deliver unresponsive consequences and treat each occasion as a new offense. I need to offer forgiveness in the moment so that he feels its over and done with, giving the correction a chance to take root and new patterns to form. I need to be affirming any and every way the change shows itself in the moments, minutes and hours that follow.
My focus will be on forgiveness and keeping no record of wrongs. My strength will lie in Christ. What will your focus be this week?