Advent 2019 – A Journey Towards Forgiveness
And My people (who are known by My name) humbly pray, follow My commandments, and abandon any actions or thoughts that might lead to further sinning, then I shall hear their prayers from My house in heaven, I shall forgive their sins, and I shall save their land from the disasters. – 2 Chronicles 7:14 (The Voice)
Here is my basic theory about trying to follow Christ, the whole goal, perhaps (over)simplified into one sentence: In any given situation, take whatever I want to do, and do the opposite.
Because I know myself. I’m greedy and selfish. I’ll cheat if I can get away with it. I’ll lie to make myself look good. I’m a big fan of grandeur and self-promotion. I’m totally in favor of doing whatever it takes to get ahead.
Jesus ain’t like that.
He teaches me to practice humility. Love. Acceptance. Honesty. Integrity. Generosity. Compassion. Truthfulness. Selflessness. Forgiveness. Naturally, I’m not very good at any of those things, let alone all of them.
Like in this verse, the challenge is to abandon any actions or thoughts that might lead to further sinning. Actions? Maybe. I’ve so far found it pretty easy to avoid killing someone. Thoughts? Not so much. I’ve gotten plenty angry at people (see Matthew 5:21-26 ).
And that’s the whole point. I can’t do this by myself. I’ll never accomplish this on my own. I need something better. SomeONE better. I need Jesus.
Join the Journey
As we journey towards the manger this Advent, we’re going to focus on forgiveness. (Don’t worry, we’re still going to haveour series on health every Monday). But I want to take time to understand the role that forgiveness plays in all of this.
Maybe we have trouble forgiving ourselves for the stuff we’ve done.
Maybe we can’t forgive others.
Maybe it’s justified.
Maybe it’s not.
Whatever it is, we need to talk about it.
Because it’s holding you back.
Weighing you down.
Keeping you from your goals.
Limiting your potential.
Stealing Your Joy.
So join me on this journey of Advent. A journey towards wholeness. Towards restoration. Towards hope. Towards forgiveness.
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