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The Responsibility Of Reconciliation

Like water spilled on the ground, which cannot be recovered, so we must die. But God does not take away life; instead, he devises ways so that a banished person may not remain estranged from him.  2 Samuel 14:14

 

As believers, reconciliation is a responsibility that we should not take lightly. To truly live and love people the way that Jesus did is to die to self. That means forgiving others as he has forgiven us. I know, it’s easier said than done. I’ve been there. Hurt hurts. And when someone hurts you, betrays or wrongs you, our humanness resorts to blocking them out..it’s our way of punishing them for wronging us. As I read this verse in 2 Samuel, I thought: wow, if God did to us like we do to others, we’d all be in trouble. I love how this verse says “but God does not take away life...” God has every right to punish us for the ways we’ve wronged Him, but if he did that, I’m sure we would all be living in constant punishment. And think about that..if we were living in constant punishment, it would suck the life right out of us all. There would be no hope or joy in living. God does not take away life..he came to give us life more abundantly (John 10:10). When we block others out in order to punish them for what they’ve done to us, we end up punishing ourselves, first and foremost. We think we’re punishing them, but our minds become focused on not letting that person in, or making sure they know we’re upset with them, or trying to see if we can see how miserable they are..or should be now that we’ve put up a wall with them. And yes sometimes our actions do end up hurting them as well. Maybe they truly didn’t mean to hurt you and now you’re hurting and punishing them by banishing them. Now let me clarify, I’m not saying you should continue to let every person have endless access to you and your life. There are boundaries and sometimes hurt does burn bridges. However, I am saying that though a bridge may be burned and your friendship or relationship may never be the same as it once was, there is always room for reconciliation, forgiveness and clearing any offense or bitterness and allowing God to heal and mend the hurt. That doesn’t always mean giving those who have hurt or betrayed you a seat in the front row again, but that does mean being civil and friendly. Romans 12:18 says “Do all that you can to live in peace with everyone.” We have this one life. And at some point we will all move from this life to another...don’t wait to make things right before you no longer have the chance to do so. God does not banish us for the wrongs we’ve done to him, he devises ways to allow us to be reconciled with him. As so should we constantly be looking for and devising ways to reconcile our friendships and relationships. Life is messy, relationships are hard, people are all so different and we don’t always get it right, personalities don’t always mesh together beautifully - but today the Lord reminded me that to love others the way he loves us (an instruction he has given us to live by) - to represent Him well, is to take on the responsibility of reconciliation in our lives and relationships. It may not always be received well by the other party, but it’s our responsibility to take that step so that others may see the heart of Jesus through our lives. I encourage you today to ask the Lord if there is anyone you need to take a step towards reconciliation with. If he brings someone to mind, ask him to lead you and help you take that first step. He will faithfully lead you step by step. 🤍


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