I was given a handout by my Discipleship Community leader, Karl Scott, on the Lord's Prayer as "homework" last Tuesday because we ran out of time to complete it during our time together as a group. This particular lesson was on "...as we have forgiven others..."
It was a great reminder of two things: 1) the wonder of God's mercy and depth to which he forgives us and 2) the freedom we can experience when we forgive others. Scripture communicates to us that we will be forgiven AS we forgive others. In other words, if we want the floodgates of heaven to pour out mercy and forgiveness upon us, than we should do like wise to the world around us. It is a very similar concept to the Great Commandment: "To love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul and strength and to love your neighbor as yourself." God is saying that to love Me is to love people. To be forgiven is to forgive.
Listen to the grace and mercy that we find in Psalm 103:8-14.
8 The Lord is merciful and gracious,
slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
9 He will not always chide,
nor will he keep his anger forever.
10 He does not deal with us according to our sins,
nor repay us according to our iniquities.
11 For as high as the heavens are above the earth,
so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him;
12 as far as the east is from the west,
so far does he remove our transgressions from us.
13 As a father shows compassion to his children,
so the Lord shows compassion to those who fear him.
14 For he knows our frame;
he remembers that we are dust.
Let us continue in our receiving of God's grace and forgiveness and let us continue in extending grace and forgiveness of others.
If you haven't taken the time to go through this past lesson in our Discipleship Communities, it would do you well to do so. If you don't have a copy, request one for your DC leader or email Samantha at email@example.com and request one.