Psalm 130:1-8 Have you ever been offended? Most of the offenses I experience are those that I take up for others. The Bible is clear, however, that love is not easily provoked or offended. I have come to ask God's forgiveness for not walking in His path of love, and then to ask Him for the power to get back on that path. When we are personally offended, it is always because our pride has been hurt. Knowing this has helped me to stay on the path of love. The moment I am offended, I confess pride because I know it was my pride in some way that was hurt.
It is so important to quickly confess our own sin of pride and then to release the offense to the Lord instead of holding on to it. Satan loves nothing better than to have us keep mulling over the offense. He will put all kinds of accusations in our mind against the brother or sister who offended us, and all of those accusations are usually not founded on the truth. We know who is the accuser of the brethren, and he also is the father of lies.
We can learn a lot from David's prayer in this psalm: "If You, Lord, should mark iniquities, O Lord, who could stand?" (v. 3).
This scripture shows us clearly what God's character is. He is merciful and He does keep short accounts. He does not mark our iniquities. In Him we always find forgiveness. We are exhorted in the Bible to forgive as Jesus forgave. He said on the cross, "Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do." God forgives us for Christ's sake. He not only forgives us, but He also reconciles us to Himself.
If we sincerely want to grow to be more like Jesus every day, then we too must keep short accounts. The moment a person offends us, we must quickly forgive and reach out to him and be reconciled to him. If a person is offended by us, and we quickly ask his forgiveness and then express our desire for reconciliation, we are walking in love. That person, however, may not respond to our forgiveness because he may choose to carry a grudge or an offense for a long time. If this is the case, we must continue to reach out to this person in love until that day reconciliation occurs. Also pray for that person to be healed of all of his hurts because a person who remains in hurt also remains in unforgiveness and holds on to an offense.
Lord, forgive me for the times I have been offended. I confess my sin of pride and ask You to help me walk in love. Thank You, for not marking my iniquities, and help me not to mark others' sins against me, but instead forgive them quickly and seek reconciliation with them. Amen.
READ: 1 Kings 9:1-10:29; Acts 8:14-40; Psalm 130:1-8; Proverbs 17:2-3