For a couple of weeks our church is exploring the topic of forgiveness.
It’s interesting that, as it turns out, today’s scripture passage selection is on the same subject. (See Luke 17:1-6)
First, Jesus spoke of how we are called to forgive others who offend us – even up to 7 times in one day – if they are sincerely repentant of hurting us. He is not being legalistic here, i.e. “Up to 7 times a day you must forgive but over that, they are on their own!” Rather, he is pointing out that even when our natural tendency is to hold a grudge we shouldn’t.
Not surprisingly, the disciples responded, “Lord, increase our faith!”
That’s when he said that even they only had a tiny mustard seed’s worth of faith -they could work miracles.
It’s a great subject to consider during Lent. To consider how we are called, just like the Lord, to be suffering servants – loving, forgiving, over and over again. Though it may be seemingly difficult, even just a tiny bit of faith, can make it happen.
So often, when asked to show some grace, some forgiveness, we scream, “But I just can’t!” My response, “You’re right, on your own, you may find you can’t. On the other hand, God can, working in and through you, if you will let God override your natural tendency to seek revenge.”
So, during Lent, think about how – with God’s help – maybe you can put down the rock of bitterness you have been carrying for too long. Have a little faith – you can do it.
Come to think of it. Why do it just at Lent? Why not all the time?