Forgiveness – at the centre of God’s heart
The things we feel ‘guilty’ for are legion – when we lose it, being confused, not matching up to what we think others expect of us, not being good enough. And that’s before we start on outright failures – lying, cheating, stealing. And sometimes ‘not coming to Church’ feels just the
inevitable consequence, we don’t feel up to it, or worse still, worth it!
Now let me ask, how do we react when our children struggle with stuff like this, as part of learning to handle themselves?
Surely, with immense compassion, with every willingness to help them through it!
Why should we think God himself has any less heart towards us!?
In the book ‘The Shack’ (or the film version many have seen recently), God says a number of times over, “You know, I’m especially fond of you!” The whole story is about the immense love of the Trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit towards us (portrayed as 3 people, yet completely one of heart and mind). It explores in depth the cost and difficulty of dealing with all that anger, weakness, refusal to accept ourselves, uncertainty, self-centredness, alongside the deep need for justice and our inability to know what real justice is! The real strength proves to lie not with us, which is the most common mis-conception among human beings, but in God’s power to forgive. He is the roaring lion with all the strength to overcome the enemy. And in turn, the main character learns to be a forgiving person himself – both of himself and others. It is a powerful thing forgiveness, and frees the heart, for our own sake and for those around us. Even if it is the most difficult and costly thing in the world!