Where does forgiving strength come from?
It comes from our ability to see through the lens of Calvary.
Luke 23:34 (TPT) a;
“While they were nailing Jesus to the Cross, He prayed over and over, ‘Father forgive them, for they don’t know what they’re doing.”
Unforgiveness Was Conquered Once And For All!
It was through Jesus Christ’s continual prayer to Father God for the forgiveness of man’s sins, while He was being crucified, that unforgiveness was conquered once and for all! We also, as Born Again Believers in Christ Jesus, can find forgiving strength through the finished work of Calvary. How? Through the lens of Divine Love, Mercy and Forgiveness.
Hebrews 12:24 (TPT);
“And we have come to Jesus who established a new covenant with His Blood sprinkled upon the mercy seat; Blood that continues to speak from Heaven, “Forgiveness,” a better message than Abel’s blood that cries from the earth, “justice.”
Is There An Internal Covenant Of Forgiveness?
Seeing through the lens of Calvary allows us to speak the language of Heaven—“Forgiveness” rather than the language of “justice”. Justice is the demand for human resolution outside of the atoning work of Jesus Christ.
When our spirit becomes fluent at speaking “Forgiveness,” we develop “Forgiving Strength”. This Forgiving Strength comes from our relationship with God. Father God witnessed the Crucifixion of His Son Jesus Christ, through the lens of Forgiving Strength. At Calvary, God established with mankind an Eternal Covenant of Forgiveness. It is through this Eternal Covenant that anyone who says yes to Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior will inherit forgiving strength.
Forgiveness was a hard lesson for me to learn. God needed me to see my mom through The Lens of Calvary. The opportunity came when He instructed me to move to the state of Hawaii. Sounds like a dream come true right? Well, at the time, it was anything but that. Why? Because God was directing me to live with a mother I “hated.” The verbal and physical abuse that I experienced through a wounded and bitter mother created within me a fragile, calloused heart, void of joy and peace and I hated her for it! Besides, she had just re-married to my step-father, and I did not want to be a burden to them.
Resisting The Big Move!
When God first spoke to my heart and told me to move there to live with them, I had the nerve to look up to Heaven and tell Him, “NO!” Didn’t He know how much I hated her?! Over the next year, God would frequently prompt me to move to Hawaii, and I would always respond in the same defiant manner. During this year of open rebellion towards God, He spoke to my heart and told me that I would never be the Christian wife, mother, and minister that He called me to be if I would not learn how to love and forgive my mother.
Jeremiah 13:15 (AMPC);
“Hear and give ear, do not be proud, for The Lord has spoken [says Jeremiah].”
Revenge Or Mercy!
Without realizing it, I had proudly justified the hate I felt for my mom because of childhood events I had experienced growing up. “I wanted revenge and justice, but God wanted mercy and forgiveness.” He wanted that Divine Mercy and Forgiveness to flow through me!
The Biggest Crossroads Of My Life!
This decision placed me at a crossroads in my life. The choice to love and forgive my mom was mine to make, and I knew it. No one could make it for me! God would not even make it for me! He was gently reminding me that because He had forgiven me at Calvary I could now forgive her, even if I did not feel like it. I needed to surrender to The Forgiving Strength that comes from The Lord. Hebrews 12:15 was the bridge of strength that pulled me through.
Hebrews 12:15 (TPT);
“Watch over each other to make sure that no one misses the revelation of God’s Grace. And make sure no one lives with a root of bitterness sprouting within them which will only cause trouble and poison the hearts of many.
“Root of Bitterness”
God Himself was watching over me to make sure that a “root of bitterness would not sprout within me!” He knew the future He had prepared for me, and He did not want me to lose my way or lead others astray through a bitter heart. A bitter heart is a deadly heart. It can poison every other heart that it comes in contact with. When we allow bitterness to take root in our hearts, we are in essence saying that “Calvary is not enough for us.”
Hebrews 12:28-29 (TPT);
“Since we are receiving our rights to an unshakeable Kingdom we should be extremely thankful and offer God the purest worship that delights His Heart as we lay down our lives in absolute surrender, filled with awe.” “For our God is a Holy, devouring fire!”
No Longer Able To Hold Back The Tears
Drawing on The Forgiving Strength of The Lord, I looked out the plane window and marveled at how God’s swift intervention and provision for my life occurred. The flight from Washington DC to Honolulu, Hawaii was a long one, and I was glad the plane was nearly empty. No longer able to hold the tears back, I began to weep uncontrollably.
I realized how my life had been miraculously spared so many times, and just to get me to the point of absolute surrender. This was the Purifying Presence of Almighty God holding me! I was finally ready to love and forgive my mom!
Isaiah 40:31 (AMPC);
“But those who wait for The Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired.”
© 2021 Clare Matthews – Boldly For Him. “All Rights Reserved.” Photo: Laura Fuhrman