All my walls are down I say...yet why when I pray do I feel like there is a blockage? What's there, tough and sinewy, not of God, trying to intercept the words I speak to Him like a spider web? Plaque in an artery, gunked up and sticky, not easily removed, affecting my whole body?
Sin, more directly, unforgiveness. Although I've forgiven I haven't forgiven. Forgiving, evidently, can be harder than I thought. Repenting, turning away from this behavior, Spirit, lead me how to forgive.
But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear. Isaiah 59:2Grace - God's free and unmerited favor toward me. While I was still insulting Him and His ways, He softened my heart and drew me to Him to hold me and love me. And what did I do to deserve this? Nothing. I did nothing.
But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. Romans 5:8Forgiveness - Canceling a debt. I needed to pay for all those sins I committed, but Jesus did it for me and now I'm forgiven, my debt is canceled. I still continue to make mistakes. I'm not perfect. I still require more grace and more forgiveness. I'm little, I'm human. And others are too. We all require forgiveness and grace.
But Jesus was saying, Father, forgive them; for they do not know what they are doing. Luke 22:34aSo, as I look to forgive like God repeatedly forgives me - I will exercise grace, I will love, I will extend my forgiveness much like a gift - not expecting anything in return - no strings attached. I will cancel the debt owed. I will not expect that I'll never be hurt again. As I cut through the tough fibers, they will release her from the debt of what she took from me, cutting the unhealthy tie to the offense and opening up more communication with Him. And when the plaque wants to start to stick again, reminding me how I was wronged, it will find no place to stick as I tell it that she, like me, needs grace and I'm going to extend it.
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you. Ephesians 4:32
Shouldn't you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?' Matthew 18:33As I write these words I can literally feel my heart softening, thank you for helping, Holy Spirit. This is my heart, help me to do it.