Entrusted to Forgive

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God ties people to our very destinies through forgiving. Purposefully He brings souls into our lives to offend us in order for us to forgive them. It’s a trust that He gives to us. He does this because He knows we’ll eventually allow His integrity to do the work of forgiving. So, if there’s someone in your life that’s continually infuriating you…know this: it’s a privilege He’s entrusted to you. Oh JOY!

Forgive Here and Forgive There

line of people I've been entrusted to forgive
If you walk on this earth you will encounter irritating people. They abound in every nook and crevice of this planet. If you’re free of this, it probably means you’re Tom Hanks in the movie Castaway. But then it would be you who was irritating, so my point still stands (laughing). Who knows? You might meet me and say I am irksome. This is just a given for us all – we will be annoyed and aggravated by people.

But in this post, I am speaking of something beyond just the expected annoyance. I’m writing about our individual life assignments, not just the casual meetings. Sure, I have to be forgiving towards everyone, but I’m talking about the people God has specifically tied to your very destiny.

Entrusted with Forgiveness

Who are they? It could be a parent, sibling, spouse, boss, co-worker, business partner, disciple, friend, etc. I think you get the point. It’s someone I have active dealings with, either through history or present involvement. It’s the people who usually have access to my heart or life in a deeper way, and there is the tie. I’m bound with God’s cords and in my forgiveness is our freedom. The assault has been personally directed, but it’s not personal. You’re chosen to bring Christ’s message and bear this person’s attack and resistance as well.

Often these people are offensive to more than just you. These people have taken their lives out on every passerby they meet. But then again, maybe you’re the singular focus of their particular cruelty. These parties walk the face of the earth like lost souls, haunting and defiling. They carry baggage like a caravan across the Sahara and deposit their cursed goods on their choice of recipient.

I have seen this be about a father who makes everyone in the family pay while acting like the greatest guy to outsiders. Or that wounded woman who sees her abusive mother in every female face. Each situation is as individual as the persons involved. The common core is God’s choosing of you to be an ambassador of forgiveness.

You May Be the Only One Forgiving

Maybe no one else will forgive them. Maybe no other soul will give them true forgiveness but you. And because you are His, He wants to use your life to bring His forgiveness. You’re the living ambassador of the work He did on the cross. You’re called to deliver the message with life more than words. You’re Christ’s extended reach and conduit to bring the reality that they WERE forgiven and ARE forgiven.

The Spirit will have to walk this out in your life. It may involve words or possibly not. It may bring about life change, or perhaps not. Like I said, the situations are as unique as the individuals. But your very living destiny will rest in the issuing of this forgiveness. You are bound to its delivery. Your very life is in the balance. And this is not a punishment but an entrustment. God has entrusted you with the work of forgiving. His own integrity will be represented through your life. You will be the one who gives His gift, received or not. And at the end of the age, your living example will be the evidence to these souls that God reached out to them. They will be without excuse because you let the Father forgive them through you, whether they receive His gift or not.

So we are Christ’s ambassadors: God is making His appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, “Come back to God!”
2 Corinthians 5:20 NLT

* In 2004 Martha and I traveled to Slovakia. While there we delivered messages that were broadcast across the country via radio. This region was ransacked by the former USSR leaving it’s beauty dim and riddled with damage. All of the women we encountered living during this post-war season had been assaulted in the course of the pillaging. Their lives were devastated and the need to forgive is huge.  Forgive, Forgive is the 2 CD series capturing this message offering hope and grace while challenging to embrace forgiveness for our own destiny.

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[…] forgive. (John) Do you remember a number of years back, I think we talked about on a podcast, where I was talking about a man who had offended me? And that God said that He had literally tied my destiny to that man? Do […]

The Rwandans have shown such grace in forgiving the horrors of the genocide they endured. Many stories have been shared. I was privileged to meet Bishop John Rucyahana who led the charge to help individuals and communities forgive those that murdered their families. These were often very torturous and brutal murders. Those that have forgiven have often restored these to their communities and they are now helping to carry for the women and children of the men that they killed. As we Forgive is a wonderful doc. of this process.

Yes John! And since being forgiven is not the same thing as being cleansed, forgiving others is not the same as forgiving them and seeing them as cleansed by God as well, is also not the same thing!!! And when THAT happens, to me, it is THE greatest evidence of Jesus – I recognize Him and I can see that He is HERE! I ask myself how else would we be connected as Body through Him if not by the act of forgiveness! Because anyone knows that there is absolutely nothing that binds us humans together strong enough, or long… Read more »

This is such an important message John. God has really been coming after me with Isaiah 61 (and Luke 4: 14-21) for over a year now showing me the people I need to forgive are prisoners who need freeing…just as I constantly need freeing/forgiveness. Today’s blog just puts that unction into Word(s).
Bless you

“They will be without excuse because you let the Father forgive them through you, whether they receive His gift or not.” This has been an area where I got hung up. It’s not in my control as to whether or not they receive the forgiveness. I am thinking of Martha’s devotional #181 Eternal Freedom which I printed out as a reminder that Jesus never begged anyone to follow Him. I must only do what The Father tells me to do, the rest is up to Him.

THANK YOU, bless you for the beautiful message of forgiveness, and I can testify personally of the great gift you and Jennifer and Martha have given to me and countless others. May the LORD spread this LOVE to all who read and receive and obey this word..

Shocking, John. Thank you.