Friday, February 17, 2017

Our Applecart

“For I wrote you out of great distress and anguish of heart and with many tears, not to grieve you but to let you know the depth of my love for you.” 2 Co 2:4.

One of the toughest things parents must do is to discipline our children when they do something wrong. When they are toddlers their offenses are black and white…cut and dry…right and wrong. But as they grow into their own independent lives choices are based on the unfolding of society’s feast. The culture offers a table of tempting dishes which are beautiful to the eyes and appetizing to the taste. Our jobs do not end when our children mature. There have been times when I had to have some very heart wrenching talks with my adult children. Those times were riddled with fear…fear that my attempt to continue to stand for right or wrong would be met with rejection. Those times were met with silent groans and private tears, as my heart anguished for them to walk in the freedom of Christ. I can remember as an adult child being on the other end of my parents’ disagreement of decisions I had made. They had it right. Although they cared immensely for my feelings, their love for me to walk in truth was greater. I am so grateful for those tough talks between my parents and myself. But as Paul wrote, his words spoken to them were difficult and gut wrenching motivated by his love for them. Sometimes loving someone looks much more like hurting someone. We cannot depend on the approval of others in dealing with those delicate matters of the heart. 

Paul followed up with the instruction for them to forgive and comfort those who had hurt them. ‘Whatever the offense was as he addressed the Corinthians he wasn’t confronting them to hurt them, but rather to let them know how deeply he cared! Perhaps one of the most tragic ways we fail to love someone is when we say or do nothing while they run off the rails, all because we don’t want to upset the applecart – usually our applecart.’ All Things New, Kelly Minter, p 34. Once the delicate discussions have been had we must not judge but forgive any offenses which came through that experience. We are all called to forgive, comfort and encourage in the same way we have received from God. ‘When we harbor unforgiveness toward someone, we’ve started to lose touch with our own need for forgiveness and to lose sight of the forgiveness Jesus has freely given us.’ All Things New, Kelly Minter, p. 34.

“Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.” Col 3:13-14.

No comments: