This is an act of His sovereign choice and power. It is possible because of the grace and work of Jesus Christ on the cross. ‘I, even I, am He who blots out your transgressions, for my own sake, and remembers your sins no more’ emphasises God’s forgiving and forgetting.
Humanity finds forgetting impossible.
Memories may lay dormant for years, then someone presses a certain ‘button’ and up surges pleasant or unpleasant events. As Christians this can be very annoying, especially in relational matters associated with worship and ministry. Such a fact of life can make us feel depressed with our spiritual maturity or lack of it. When we read Paul’s statement that Love keeps no record of wrongs done against it we smell failure. Love may want to lock bad experiences, malicious words, disappointments in a chest and throw away the key, but memory won’t let it.
How impossible this makes the fulfilling of Love’s desire.
God requires us to worship and serve Him with a clean relational record sheet.
is the ground on which grace made such a clean sheet possible. Putting the
cross between our memory and the offending person will prove our memory’s
protection. This is the merciful power of Love. It reaches up for the covering
of Christ, His atonement, to place over our personal hurts. Then by His grace
we can honestly pray for the one or many who have cut our soul. In Christ’s
strength we will wait opportunity to speak with the person or persons
concerned. Then when we worship the Lord in the company of those who have hurt us
we are delivered from hypocrisy. Jesus Christ sees our scars as we perceive His
in the joy of the Eucharist. In God’s sight, scars can be beautiful expressions
of Love. The unhealthy alternative is a festering sore on heart and mind with
its detrimental impact on our worship, witness and walk.
The clean relational sheet is also God’s way for our spiritual sanity. It protects us from being blackmailed by past events. This saves our minds from emotional overload, sour relationships within or outside the Church, and the tendency towards revenge. Love saves us from such tyranny.
Love’s not keeping record of offences indicates that the issues have been dealt with biblically. There is no residue of animosity. Forgiveness has been offered. Reconciliation attempted.
We cannot forget!
We can forgive!
By the atoning power of Love we can cover our memory’s record sheet. If and when something arouses the matter again what is our response. Praise the Lord it has been dealt with and settled in God’s sight. Why do we desire this? It is what the Love of God has done for us. Applying Love to our own heart and then to others creates both the healing process and the joy of the Lord to our hearts. Then we can genuinely care for, worship with, work alongside and walk in the same direction with those who have had an unfortunate imprint upon our memory.
Ray Hawkins has a Christmas devotional published by Even Before Publishing called ‘Bethlehem’s Warrior Baby.’
It is a 31-day biblical meditation on aspects of Christmas as written in the Scriptures. It is also available as an Ebook.