I’m not talking about debt we owe to banks or credit credit card companies. Today, i was convicted by a this story that Jesus told to His followers.
“Then Peter came to Him and asked, “LORD, how often should I forgive someone who sins against me? Seven times?” “No, not seven times,” Jesus replied, “but seventy times seven!” “Therefore, the Kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a king who decided to bring his accounts up to date with servants who had borrowed money from him. In the process, one of his debtors was brought in who owed him millions of dollars. He couldn’t pay, so his master ordered that he be sold—along with his wife, his children, and everything he owned—to pay the debt. But the man fell down before his master and begged him, ‘Please, be patient with me, and I will pay it all.’ Then his master was filled with pity for him, and he released him and forgave his debt. But when the man left the king, he went to a fellow servant who owed him a few thousand dollars. He grabbed him by the throat and demanded instant payment. His fellow servant fell down before him and begged for a little more time. ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it,’ he pleaded. But his creditor wouldn’t wait. He had the man arrested and put in prison until the debt could be paid in full. When some of the other servants saw this, they were very upset. They went to the king and told him everything that had happened. Then the king called in the man he had forgiven and said, ‘You evil servant! I forgave you that tremendous debt because you pleaded with me. Shouldn’t you have mercy on your fellow servant, just as I had mercy on you?’ Then the angry king sent the man to prison to be tortured until he had paid his entire debt. That’s what my heavenly Father will do to you if you refuse to forgive your brothers and sisters from your heart.” – Matthew 18:21-35 NLT
Money is a very touchy subject, and obviously has been for millennia. There are individuals who have taken advantage of me in the past, and who owe me thousands of dollars. I have been holding on to the debt and tne paperwork for years, determined to somehow collect it. As I read this parable, I was again struck by the final sentence. Even though I am completely unworthy of any forgiveness, or any Mercy or Grace from my LORD, I desire forgiveness from Him with all of my being. I know, without any doubt, that I have received the Salvation of Jesus Christ, I have a healthy respect for the LORD and His Judgment. I don’t want Him to see that I have harboured resentment against anyone who I believe owe me a debt. I don’t want Him to find forgiveness in my heart when I face Him.
To that end, today I am determined to go through my files and destroy any paperwork on people who “owe” me. As for those whom I owe, I beg the indulgence of time in order to repay them. Forgiveness is hard, but it is possible through the Holy Spirit working in me. Left to my own thoughts and feelings, forgiveness would never happen. I turn to Christ. As the Father has forgiven me, LORD, I plead for a forgiving heart and mind. I pray for forgiveness for emotional hurt as well as monetary hurt. It is only through the Grace and Forgiveness I receive from You that I can forgive others. You don’t call for me to forget, because by remembering, we can hopefully not fall into the traps and situations set up by the enemy, and remain in Your Will. Thank You, JESUS, for Your Love and unimaginable sacrifice. AMEN.