Dabar [theme]

He shall cover thee with His feathers, and under His wings shalt thou find refuge: His truth is a shield and buckler
Psalms 91:4

Be it ours,when we cannot see the face of God, to trust under the shadow of His wings. C.H. Spugeon

Saturday, March 17, 2007


Nothing retro, no returning to the days of George Carlin or Richard Pryor, I'm talking about the F-word which can make Pastors anxious about the events that are taking place, the F-word which shuts Elders boards behind closed doors to dialogue about decisions that are being made and trying to anticipate the fallout by these actions, the F-word which brings a woman to tears in Sunday school as she expresses in very simple and direct language her grief at the state of her dismay, the F-word which brings out such strong emotions in a man that he can barely contain as he questions the validity and sincerity of the conversations that he has had as the reality of his expectations for resolution and healing is seemingly contrary to his hearts desire.

I'm talking about the word - forgive.

Arguably the most powerful word in the English language, at least by definition of a concept of human relationship.

Two other words walk in hand with forgive, trust and forget. One must increase that the other may decrease. In the realm of personal relationship where differences are bound to happen, the opportunity for memory to play a very large part in the resolution of conflict is the strongest of realities. Trust is linked to another word - repent, it is in the aspect of belief that a party or persons has resolved and committed to a continuing way of life and relationship which would ensure no further harm to be done, that we find the building of trust. Memory serving its purpose in offering security and protection bucks against forgive, justifying its position by its claims for safety and its obligation to guarantee the health of the individual. This becomes the great crux in the realization of the full import of forgive in the lives of people.

Does forgive involve forget?

In the economy of God, Yes, in the reality of life, Maybe, more than likely No. In the economy of God it would be nice to have the reality of Dante's river of forget and remember, where are sins are forgot and our good points become remember. The problem does not actually lie with the memory, it lies with the power of reflection upon that memory. The lady from Sunday school spoke expressively and pointedly of the fact that our gaze fixed upon the cross should remove the burdens of memory and release the freedom to love. It is in this context that we find probably our greatest failing as the Church.

It is in looking upon the cross and the unconditional grace that was exemplified by the death of Jesus that the true power of forgive is found. There must be a personal realization of that power, and here the question arises, Is there that evidence in my life? In the life of those around me? In the Church?

1 comment:

Virginia said...

People should read this.