Andyouinvitedmein’s Weblog

I believe in absolutes…

Posted on: February 15, 2008

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There are absolutes in this world. The sun does rise and set. And as well gravity plays an important part in our daily lives.

In my early days as the “conservative of Conservatives” I believed there were all kinds of absolutes for people who crossed spiritual boundaries into sin. Most of my conservative friends believed the same way. I can’t remember a whole lot of sermons preached on “absolute grace” or “absolute forgiveness.” Since I had asked Jesus into my heart when I was eight, and I didn’t have a long rap sheet of sin. Therefore, the idea of “grace” was more intellectual than experiential.  

One recent event that comes to mind when you speak of grace: the shooting at the Amish school. The Amish community embraced the family of the shooter and grieved with them. There was no reason for the Amish to do that except that Jesus has done it for them. He did it for all of us, and how can we do anything less? 

Loving my daughters is easy because they love me back and grace isn’t difficult. But what if someone took their life…I’d have no choice but to forgive and extend to him/her the same grace that Jesus has given me. Sometimes the offense isn’t as high profile as a murder. It may be someone who has hurt your feelings, or someone who has rejected you. Maybe you are the rejecter and need to go to that person and ‘come clean.”

The final example in my life about grace and forgiveness came about almost 20 years ago. A close friend—”Jill”—and I had been at odds. I had stood firm in a situation where Jill wanted me to help her. If I had, I’d have stabbed another friend in the back so I didn’t do it, and as the result, Jill had a great deal of hurt.  

I was barely a month pregnant with my oldest and we were on our way to my hometown. A friend was riding with us and he mentioned Jill’s anger toward me. He said “the Bible says if you have ‘an ought’ against someone, you’re to reconcile…” and he continued with “the Bible never said whether you’re right or wrong, it just said that you need to go to them.” 

I stewed about it, but the next week I wrote her a note. Eight months later, on the day my baby was due, Jill called me to apologize. She said she had torn up my letter in anger, but over the course of the months she realized she needed to call.  

Writing to her was the right thing because of my commitment to Christ. Just like the Amish did the right thing with the shooter’s family—because of what Jesus has done for us, we can do no less. Truly there are absolutes in our walk with Jesus: grace and forgiveness.

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