Forgiveness and Reconciliation

Merriam-Webster defines Forgiveness as to cease to feel resentment against (an offender): Pardon; to give up resentment of or claim to requital.

Reconciliation is defined as to restore friendly relations between; to cause to coexist in harmony; make or show to be compatible; to bring into agreement or harmony; to reconsecrate

In her blog, “Forgiveness Does Not Equal Reconciliation”, Anna Smith writes,

“Forgiveness for past wrongs does not guarantee a future relationship set up exactly like the past relationship. Forgiveness does not equal total reconciliation. When we are dealing with people who have sinned against us, we should long for true reconciliation. But we also need to realize that sometimes, in this world of sin and woe, reconciliation is not always possible, or it might be possible later but not now. Reconciliation might not be possible because you can cancel the debt against someone (forgive them) but YOU CANNOT FORCE THEM TO RECONCILE WITH YOU. True, actual reconciliation requires that both parties are actively working for the good of the other person and the good of the relationship. You can forgive people, but you cannot force them to make that effort. And if they won’t, you don’t have to go on pretending that this is a good, healthy, reconciled relationship.”

There are countless scriptures in the Bible that discuss forgiveness. I John 1:9 states,

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”

Also, Mark 11:25 it states, “And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”

God forgives our sins and also, He wants to be in a “relationship” with us. As we saw from the earlier writing by Ann Smith, true reconciliation requires BOTH parties to actively work for the good of the relationship. Now that God has forgiven our sins, He wants us to have a relationship with him.

Forgiveness is not the end of the road!

II Corinthians 5:17-19 says,

17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. 18 Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, 19 that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.”

God has forgiven us and reconciled us to Himself. Likewise, He has committed us to the world to reconcile it back to Him! We are on Assignment! Take your assignment seriously!

This is Leslie Eaddy Brooks, Think About It.

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