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Present & Pleased Devotional DAY TWENTYSIX

In Matthew 18:21-22, Peter asks Jesus how many times he should forgive someone who sins against him? Seven times? Jesus replied, “not seven times, but seventy times seven”.

To be honest with you, when I read that I think “Wow Jesus! That’s a lot of forgiving! I’ll see what I can do but I’m not promising anything”.

The problem with that? I’m thinking about me doing the forgiving, not the other way around. When I think about how many times I’ve been forgiven in the past, or how many more times I’ll need to be forgiven in the future, 70x7 doesn’t seem so large.

It’s embarrassing to admit the same exact number can seem so big when it’s me forgiving yet so small when it’s me needing to be forgiven. I guess that makes me a hypocrite, asking God to forgive me when I’m not willing to forgive others as freely. Now obviously I’ve realized this character flaw and I’m working on it.

How about you? Do you ask God to forgive you but at the same time, refuse to forgive someone else? Are you holding a grudge while hoping God doesn’t hold one against you? I don’t know your situation or what that person did to you, but I do know what God wants. He wants you to be free from this, to lift this burden off your shoulders. He wants you to be free because He loves you and has proven it by sending His Son to die in your place…so that you can be forgiven.

So today, forgive and if you can’t, ask God to help you to forgive…because He’s already forgiven you.

executive pastor

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