Friday, April 20, 2012
Grudges and Healing
I have read that holding grudges and refusing to forgive can cause disease in our bodies, and certainly aggravate what is already an issue. I don't know about you, but I don't want anything in my life that could prevent or retard healing! So, I have been doing some thinking about it. I came up with an analogy that helped me understand the process a little better, and perhaps it will help you as well. At any rate, it can't hurt: Forgiveness is a garden that we must tend or it doesn't develop. I must work the ground (of my heart) digging it up, breaking up hard clumps, - hoeing and raking – pounding it until it is workable (ready to forgive). Then I add fertilizer and thoroughly mix it in, until it is evenly distributed. Holes must be dug and plants and seeds planted. I must water them (give the water of grace instead of the dust of vengence). I guard it (from animals, insects and birds – or more plainly – wrong attitudes, thoughts or deeds) as I watch. I make sure it gets plenty of exposure to the sun (reading the Word, praying and fellowship). The garden must be tended daily and as time goes by, I weed it and continue to water. I prune as needed. If I am not faithful and consistent in my resolve to forgive, weeds will choke out the plants by blocking them from the sunlight and drinking up all the moisture. Everything will go to seed and appear unkempt. Yields will be little or nonexistent if the garden is untended. God causes growth. We decide to forgive (we will it), but God changes our reluctant hearts and transforms them into forgiveness. We only must be willing and obedient to the point of death – death of my “right” to demand punishment – my “right” to revenge. It must be put on the cross with Christ and crucified. Just as the seed must die when planted so that the transformation (of the seed into a plant) can take place, so my desire and decision to forgive must be the starting point which begins the process of forgiveness. __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ seed.....(the decision to forgive).....seed dies (flesh crucified - deny the satisfaction of exacting revenge or punishing).....plant grows.....(daily resisting the flesh by reaffirming the decision to forgive).....plant blooms and reseeds.....(we are transformed - FORGIVENESS! __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ God takes the unjust wounds inflicted on us and the stings of abandonment and betrayal to test our hearts and bring forth the gold of forgiveness. These wounds and stings are the manure from which the blooms of forgiveness are grown. Think about it.