On Forgiveness

Today’s Readings
Genesis 33-35, Matthew 10:1-20

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10 Jacob said, “No, please, do me the kindness of accepting my gift. Seeing your face is like seeing God’s face, since you’ve accepted me so warmly. 11 Take this present that I’ve brought because God has been generous to me, and I have everything I need.” So Jacob persuaded him, and he took it.

12 Esau said, “Let’s break camp and set out, and I’ll go with you.”

13 But Jacob said to him, “My master knows that the children aren’t strong and that I am responsible for the nursing flocks and cattle. If I push them hard for even one day, all of the flocks will die. 14 My master, go on ahead of your servant, but I’ve got to take it easy, going only as fast as the animals in front of me and the children are able to go, until I meet you in Seir.”

15 Esau said, “Let me leave some of my people with you.”

But Jacob said, “Why should you do this since my master has already been so kind to me?” 16 That day Esau returned on the road to Seir,17 but Jacob traveled to Succoth. He built a house for himself but made temporary shelters for his animals; therefore, he named the place Succoth (Genesis 33:10-17, Common English Bible).

“I can’t forgive him. I just can’t do it, not after what he did to me.”

I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I have heard those words. The exact words may vary. The situation may vary from one person to another, but the meaning is much the same. “I have so much anger toward this person I just cannot let it go.”

In the television show, The Big Bang Theory, the character Sheldon Cooper has a list of “mortal enemies.” These are people who have committed some perceived wrong. In reality, these “mortal enemies” have no clue what they did or even who Sheldon Cooper might be. And, Sheldon is never prepared to forgive easily.

When we last saw Esau, we saw a man who was just about as angry with his brother Jacob as one human can get with another. Though, as we said a few days ago, the sale of Esau’s birthright to Jacob for a bowl of stew, was of Esau’s own doing. Still, Esau was angry with his brother over the transaction. Then, Jacob, with the assistance of his mother Rebekah, cheated Esau out of his birthright. Esau did have an issue here.

Time has passed. Jacob was away from Esau for more than 20 years. The old saying of, “Time heals all wounds” probably applies here. Esau seems to forgive and we can only assume that the two brothers lived out their lives in peace. Had Esau not forgiven, there is a good chance that there would be no peace.

The same can be true for us. We get angry with someone and there is no peace. There may be peace on the outside but within us, there will be turmoil and in the end, no one will win.

Over the years of Facebook, there have been many memes with great messages. I may not get the quote exactly right but it says something like this: “You forgive, not because they deserve forgiveness but because you deserve peace.”

Esau found peace.

Have a great day in the Lord.

With Joy and Thankfulness,
Keith

Copyright 2018, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

 

Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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