Tag Archive | forgiveness

Seeing Ourselves Through God’s Eyes

What we are is plain to God, and I hope it is also plain to your conscience. (2 Corinthians 5:11)

Mystery Eyes Seeing ourselves through God’s eyes isn’t always easy. In fact, for the most part it’s pretty difficult. Before we know Him, He sees us as crippled, blind, deaf, lost, and hungry and thirsty. We are empty and avoid of good. The best we can do appears as filth rags to God (Isaiah 64:6). Paul described us this way, “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient” (Ephesians 2:1-2).

Dead! It’s very difficult to view ourselves as dead when we are living, breathing, feeling. But if we don’t know Jesus Christ on a personal level that’s exactly what we are…dead.

However, God loves us even though we are nothing more than dead. He wants to bring life, and not only life, but abundant life to us. So we accept His invitation through Jesus Christ to be born into eternal life. And our position changes. We no longer hunger and thirst, for He has filled us with the Bread of Life and has giving us Living Water to drink. We are no longer lost, for He has found us. We are no longer blind, deaf, or crippled, for by His stripes He healed us.

We now possess a crown and a garment of righteousness. We are children of the King of kings. And as difficult as it was to see ourselves in reality without Christ, it seems equally difficult to see ourselves as God sees us with Christ. Pure, worthwhile, royalty as well as servants, heirs to Christ, redeemed, and loved.

Looking at ourselves as God looks at us takes courage and practice.

However, our vision must also become farsighted. We must learn to look at others through Christ’s eyes. See the truth in their condition whether it be with or without Jesus. Then we should act with as much love, mercy, and grace as we received.

We are all unworthy. But not one of us is worthless as the enemy would have us believe.

How about you? Through which mirror do you see yourself?

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

PS Guess whose eyes are in the picture and come back in a few days to find out. Better yet, follow me via email and be sure to get my updates. Thanks.

 

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G is for Grain

Joseph gathered very much grain, as the sand of the sea, until he stopped counting, for it was immeasurable. (Genesis 41:49)

Symatric Flower coloredJoseph was Jacob’s favorite son. He knew it. And so did his brothers. They sold him into slavery and told their father he was dead. Talk about a dysfunctional family.

A wealthy man named Potiphar bought Joseph, found him trustworthy, and made him lord over his entire estate. Potiphar’s wife also found Joseph worthy of benefits of which Joseph wanted no part. His rejection angered the woman. She lied to Potiphar. Potiphar had Joseph thrown into prison.

The guard found Joseph reliable and put him in charge of all the other prisoners.

Eventually, Pharaoh had a disturbing dream and said whoever could interpret the dream would become second in charge of Egypt. God granted Joseph understanding, not only for Pharaoh’s and Joseph’s sake, but for the sake of all the people in Egypt and the surrounding areas. God had given Pharaoh a warning in his dream about seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine.

Since Joseph interpreted the dream, Pharaoh put him in charge of the storehouses. As the above verse says, Joseph gathered more grain than could be measured. With it, he not only saved the Egyptians from starvation, he saved his own family—the ones you sold him into slavery and caused him so much heartache. What they had meant for evil, God blessed them with as well as Joseph.

There are many parallels between Joseph and Jesus. But the main one is God had a plan to save His people. Through Joseph, those who came to him for grain, God saved from starvation and being wiped off the face of the earth. Through Jesus, those who humble themselves and accept Jesus as the Son of God, God saves from eternal destruction.

How about you? What reminds you of Jesus that begins with the letter G?

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

The Gift of Forgiveness

Advent 2014

Day 16

“Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown. But whoever has been forgiven little loves little.” Luke 7:47

Those who are forgiven much love much

Those who are forgiven much love much

The day I sensed the Lord’s prompting to seek forgiveness from a friend to whom I had spoken unkindly, fears and insecurities crept into my soul. What if she demanded restitution of some sort? What if she totally rejected me? What if…what if I obeyed Christ and placed the outcome in His hands? I finally took up courage and approached my friend. She forgave me. Although our relationship mains somewhat strained, the sweet fragrance of forgiveness fills my soul with gratitude.

Gratitude for forgiveness motivated a sinful woman to wash Jesus’ feet with her tears. Jesus’ host, a Pharisee, hadn’t so much as given Jesus the customary basin of water to wash his own feet …

Read More

Tomorrow, we’ll look at The Gift of Yielding. Prepare by reading and meditating on Matthew 21:1-11.

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K.Hendricks

Self-Forgiveness

Soul Detox

Part 12

But who can discern their own errors? Forgive my hidden faults. Keep your servant also from willful sins; may they not rule over me. Then I will be blameless, innocent of great transgression. (Psalms 19:12-13)

Self ForgivenessOne of my dear friends suffered from cancer for several years before she won the victory through death. As her condition worsened, the slightest touch caused her severe pain. I knew this, yet, in my zeal to show affection, I attempted to massage her shoulders.

She tenderly looked up at me and said, “Please stop.”

I knew I had hurt her. The memory of it still sends a jolt of regret into my heart. (Read More)

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Forgiving Unconditionally

Soul Detox

Part 11

So shall you say to Joseph: Forgive (take up and away all resentment and all claim to requital concerning), I pray you now, the trespass of your brothers and their sin, for they did evil to you. Now, we pray you, forgive the trespass of the servants of your father’s God. And Joseph wept when they spoke thus to him. (Genesis 50:17 AMP)

Man and womanHave you ever said you’ve forgiven, but—? I have. However, I am learning when I add the word “but” I still harbor some resentment. I continue to desire requital—payment or punishment of some kind.

For a long time, I struggled with forgiving people who seemed too unconcerned about offending me to ask for forgiveness. It never occurred to me that they could be unaware that they hurt my feelings. Although I said I had forgiven, deep in my heart, I refused total pardon unless they acknowledged the problem and asked for forgiveness. Wow! Did I have a lot to learn. Read More

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Offense: Take It or Leave It

Soul Detox

Part 10

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. (Colossians 3:13 NIV)

Man and Woman 4 WebLet’s face it—offenses happen. And some of us are more easily offended than others are.

But what do the not-so-easily-offended people have that the rest of us seem to lack? I can’t speak for the vast majority since I’m just learning the better way myself. But I can share with you some of the lessons I’m putting into practice.

Years ago, there was an individual who “rubbed” me the wrong way. Whether deliberate or not, I can’t say. But she stung like a bee to the point of my leaving in a state of bewilderment and tears every time I was around her. As much as I may have wanted to totally avoid her, that was not an option, so I managed to schedule our encounters as far apart as possible. I prayed for hours, if not days, prior to the necessary meetings. Yet I still found myself incredibly hurt by her words.

I distinctly remember going to the altar one night at church, pleading with God to show me away to forgive her and reconcile our relationship. In the months to come, this is what He showed me: Read more

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks

Called to Forgive

Soul Detox

Part 9

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. (Ephesians 4:32 NIV)

for webForgiveness is a necessary action that contributes to our health and wellbeing, one we need to give as well as receive, one that must be learned and practiced regularly. But is it really possible to forgive each other in the same manner that God, through Christ, forgave us?

Knowing that God never commands us to do what is humanly impossible I struggle with this forgiveness precept. How can I let go of the offense and release the offender when the scars, some years old—still tender and sore, are there to remind me? Read More

See you in a twinkling,

Brenda K. Hendricks