Jesus loved to make a point using parables. He’s sneaky like that haha, the setup Jesus. He would share a parable, then point to you, with the goal of teaching you a lesson. I would go to say one of the hardest acts of living like Jesus, is to love the offendable.
Jesus shares the parable of the unmerciful servant in Matthew 18:21-35 . The man who owed his master a large debt and was not able to pay. The master then ordered that he, his wife and children be sold to repay the debt. The servant then fell to his knees and begged him for patience so that he may repay everything. So his master had mercy on him, cancelled his debt and set him free.
However, that same servant went out and found one of his fellow servants, who owed him a small amount. He grabbed him, began to choke him, demanding he pay back what he owed. Though the man fell to his knees, begged for mercy, he had his fellow servant thrown into prison.
You see, we as Christians can get amnesia, we so often forget the price Jesus paid for us and how easily he forgives our debts. We deserve prison yet he sets us free time and time again. Jesus ends this parable by saying,
This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.” –Matthew 18:35
It’s easy to say we forgive someone, especially if we no longer cross paths with them. The out of sight out of mind approach. But Jesus says to forgive from the heart. Meaning you approach them with a humble attitude, understanding that they are human and imperfect. Just like you.
He recently tested me in this. In dealing with two people that really offended me and treated me unfairly. The Holy Spirit spoke to me in these separate situations saying, “Leah, treat them in an unfair way. Giving them what they do not deserve. Not based on how you feel but because it’s who I am.”
With my heart racing, I went out of my way to push past the offense and treat them kindly. It wasn’t fake. It was supernatural.
Afterward, I watched the Holy Spirit powerfully work on my behalf as he opened up doors that no man can shut in multiple ways.
You see it doesn’t always feel good to live like Jesus. He loved the ones pulling out his beard, whipping him and piercing him after all he did was good. While it’s humans nature to judge others, to hold a grudge and be offended. He is the greatest example of loving well.
Let us pray: “Lord, thank you for your unconditional love and forgiveness. Please forgive me for holding onto any offense. I choose to forgive any offenders (name them specifically). I ask that you bless them. Keep my heart pure and free of any offense. Amen.”