I'm sitting outside now. I felt a sting on my leg. I looked down and there was a strange little bug on me. I knocked him off... not that I know if it was a him, but I'm suspecting. I looked on the ground for fear of a re-sting and saw him again. I stepped on him. He's gone... forever. He can't hurt me again. "HA HA little bug!" I think triumphantly. "That's what you get for messing with someone 9 million times your size!" I begin to contemplate that it's probably a very good thing I'm not God. I'm thinking a lot of people I've met would also be gone, never to be heard from again were I in control of such things.
Forgiveness is a complicated thing for an idea so simple. I think I have the kindness thing down. I can be kind to someone who's hurt me. I can grant them mercy in word and deed. I can even chance the re-sting. It's the forgetting the sting that perplexes me. The Bible says God has thrown my sins as far as the east is from the west... the east and west never touch. Never. Touch. That's so deep! The Bible's deep... as deep as the ocean... which is also where God says He has thrown my sins... straight to the bottom. I don't know anyone who's been to the bottom of the ocean, but I'm guessing I wont be meeting them in this lifetime.
The Bible also says that I will be forgiven with the same measure I forgive. This more than perplexes me, it haunts me. I want forgiveness. I've done a lot of bad things. I've never murdered anyone, but if I'm just comparing myself to the worst of society, then I've left myself an awful lot of room for some ugly living. So I know I must forgive, but to forgive as God forgives is beyond me. I guess that's why Romans 7:18 says "And I know that nothing good lives in me, that is, in my sinful nature. I want to do what is right, but I can't." I'm not capable of such an act, but there is something inside me that is. That's why I need more of God and a whole lot less of me inside. I know how to get there... prayer, communion, and dwelling on His Word. So why do I fight it? 'Cause there's that old nature in me that rises up and strives against His Spirit. I'll never get where I need to be while allowing both to exist in me.
That bug bite hurts less each minute, but I already have two mosquito bites on my other leg. I live in a world where I have been and will be bitten again and again... time after time. I can't change that, I can only move forward. "No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on
this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies