Let Go of Their Throat

An infinite God can give all of Himself to each of His children. He does not distribute Himself that each may have a part, but to each one He gives all of Himself as fully as if there were no others. –A.W. Tozer

The Wednesday Women’s Bible Study has been reading the book The Shack by William P. Young the past few months. We have slowly worked our way through, usually discussing one chapter per week. (Sidebar…if you have never participated in a book club, bible study, or group read-I highly recommend doing so. It is amazing to hear what others think about the book, chapter, etc. Such different view points, emotions evoked, past experiences resurfacing… an awesome learning experience, about yourself and life.)

We are coming to the end of the book, and as I often feel when reading a book, I don’t want it to end. It is often like saying goodbye to a new friend, knowing that you won’t ever see them again. I am a “highlighter,” which is why I have resisted the electronic book craze of late. I read with highlighter in hand, and often go back and re-read just the highlighted passages. It’s a great way of remembering. Chapter 16, which we covered this week, is very “colorful” looking back on it. The main topic is forgiveness.

I would like to share some key lines from this chapter, regarding the topic of forgiveness. Papa (God) is speaking to the main character, Mack….
-Forgiveness is not about forgetting. It is about letting go of another person’s throat.
-Forgiveness does not establish relationship, does not create a relationship. When you forgive someone you certainly release them from judgment, but without true change (on their part,) no real relationship can be established.
-Forgiveness is first for you, the forgiver, to release you from something that will eat you alive; that will destroy your joy and your ability to love fully and openly.
-Forgiveness doesn’t require you to pretend it didn’t happen.
-Forgiveness does not excuse anything.
-It’s ok to be angry, but don’t let your anger prevent you from forgiving.
-You may have to declare your forgiveness a hundred times the first day and the second day, but the third day will be less and each day after, until one day you will realize that you have forgiven completely.

I have been very blessed in my life, not to have experienced great hurt or betrayal. So my need to work through a forgiveness of someone else has been little. However, and it’s a big however, the need to forgive myself is great. How hard is it to use those basic ideas of forgiveness and turn them inward, towards ourselves? I’ve been working on it for years! And you?

Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.     Colossians 3:13

Everyone says that the holidays can be a very tough time of year for many people, for many different reasons. I encourage you to think about the importance of forgiveness, not only as we approach the time of the Christmas miracle, but as we move into a new year and head onward towards the hope of the Easter promise.

Andrea Heshmati

1 comment (Add your own)

1. Julie wrote:
Thank-you Andrea for sharing your "Highlights" of Chapter 16! Such powerful lessons to learn! Blessings, Julie

Sat, December 11, 2010 @ 4:13 PM

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