Sunday, April 11, 2010

Day 10: Ocean - Exploring The Depths Of Forgiveness

Exploring The Depths Of Forgiveness  - Based on One Month To Live by Kerry and Chris Shook 
Life Lesson (from journal): "Our sins, faults, and failures don't go away--we either confess or suppress... The key to how we leave this earth basically comes down to how we experience forgiveness and extend it to those around us.
Kerry Shook opens Day 10 by explaining how the ocean is a great metaphor for illustrating the boundless depths of God's forgiveness. But the deep sea also teaches another lesson about forgiveness. The water system for the whole world--lakes, rivers, ponds, your bath water--are ultimately supplied by the ocean. The sun evaporates ocean water, which rises and drifts over land as clouds. The clouds drop rain, which accumulates in creeks, rivers, and lakes. So this water you drink from your faucet is ultimately provided by the ocean.

Forgiveness flows in the same kind of cycle. Whenever you or anyone else offers forgiveness, the source of that forgiveness is God. Even those people who have not accepted His forgiveness are revealing His image in them when they forgive others.

(Activity from journal) Many Jesus-followers have times when they doubt that God's forgiveness is deep enough to cover everything, forever. In your own words, write a letter to yourself from God, based on the truth found in these passages: Ephesians 1:7-8; Hebrews 4:14-16; Hebrews 8:12; 1 John 5:11-15
My Letter Based Off the Passages:
Dear Selena,
You have forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of My grace. Just as I was tempted in every way, you are also and just as I came through without sin, so shall you receive mercy and find grace. For I will forgive your wickedness and will remember your sin no more. He who has me has life, which in the end, eternal life. Whatever, you ask of me, I am here to answer and guide you.

Your Father,
 Ponder These! (from journal) 
  • How completely do you accept God's forgiveness? Do you usually believe it's real, or do you live in persistent skepticism? 
  • When someone forgives you , do you feel relief? Or do you keep beating yourself up?
If you try to live without forgiving, you won't survive. It is essential that we forgive for our own sakes, otherwise we'll drown in bitterness.
Read This! (from journal) Read the story of the prostitute and the Pharisee in Luke 7:36-50. Simon the Pharisee gave some of the "logical" reasons not to forgive the woman. What are some reasons you have trouble forgiving people around you? What did Jesus say in response to those reasons and to justify forgiving the prostitute.
When I reveal my heart to God, the healing starts. I breathe out the bitterness, and then I can breathe in forgiveness.
Ponder This! (from journal) Anger--even toward God--is a natural emotion. But harbored anger becomes self-damaging bitterness (Ephesians 4:26-27) Are you angry with God? He wants you to be honest with Him. Write a prayer to God based on Psalm 73:21-26

Ponder This Too! (from journal) Are you angry with anyone? Tell God exactly how you feel. Take all the time you need. Then Read Ephesians 4:32-5:2. Turn to God and ask His forgiveness for anything you've done wrong.

Face Time
Thank You so much for the amazing freedom I find in the depths of Your forgiveness. Sometimes I refuse Your forgiveness. Help me remember how much You always want me back. Please keep me so aware of Your love that it becomes more natural for me to forgive others.

That's All For Today! Leave your comments and feedback in this post.

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