by Terri Gillespie
But Yeshua was saying, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Then they cast lots, dividing up His clothing. Luke 23:34 TLV
I waited patiently as the van backed out from the parking space. Since it was a large vehicle, I gave them plenty of room. My blinker on, I chuckled as they struggled to finally vacate the spot—I totally identified with the battle.
Just as I put my car in drive, another car appeared from nowhere and zipped into the space. They had exited their vehicle before I even thought to honk my displeasure.
Anyone remember the scene from Fried Green Tomatoes? Well, it sure flashed in my mind. Don’t think I didn’t entertain the idea of ramming my SUV into their car’s cute little behind—multiple times.
Sigh. Fortunately, I didn’t.
I found another space a few spots away, but that wasn’t the point. They were rude and inconsiderate. How could they do that to me?
Did I forgive them? Honestly, I didn’t think about it. I was too occupied with being indignant.
So, when I read today’s verse, I thought of all those occasions where I was offended or wronged or unjustly accused. How long did it take me to realize I needed to forgive those folks? Then, I thought about the weight and responsibility of forgiveness.
Can we fully comprehend the cost of forgiveness? We struggle with forgiving because we want to judge and punish or wait until the other person knows how wrong they were or apologized to us first.
Think about the cost of forgiveness for Jesus. He could have supernaturally stopped the torture. He could have rained down fire and brimstone on those meting out the wrongful judgment.
He could have risen off the cross and said, “Do you know Who I am?” –and I mean physically lift off the cross—exploding each nail.
Only by remembering these things can we understand the strength and love that it took for our Messiah to forgive at that moment. “No one has greater love than this: that he lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13 TLV
We may not be able to understand the depth of our Messiah’s love and sacrifice and forgiveness, but we can learn from it.
The practical applications of forgiveness begin at home with our family, at work with those we work for and with. It begins in the parking lot when someone “steals” our parking spot or cuts us off. Or when someone brings 19 items into the 10-item checkout line.
Every day we have a choice to forgive those who have no idea what they have done—or don’t care—and who we are. Every. Single. Day.
Remember what Yeshua did for us and do likewise in awe and gratitude. Even if someone steals that prime parking space.
This article is brought to you by the Advanced Writers and Speakers Association (AWSA).
About the author: Award-winning author and beloved speaker, Terri Gillespie writes stories of faith and redemption to nurture souls. Her novels, devotionals, messages, and blogs have drawn readers to hunger for a deeper relationship with their Heavenly Father, and His Son Jesus. Her newest novel, Sweet Rivalry, releases later this year. http://www.authorterrigillespie.com
The third and final book in the Hair Mavens series, Really Bad Hair Day, is a whirlwind of changes for the mavens—marriage, love, danger, loss, and redemption. The Hair Mavens: modern-day Ruth and Naomi stories set in a hair salon.
Join the conversation: What do you find hard to forgive?