Offense is a Prison

 

 

 

 

 

 

1st Corinthians 13 is one of the most beautiful descriptions of love. It’s a verse used often and with good reason at weddings. So, most of us are familiar.

It starts with love being patient and kind. It goes on laying out the stunning attributes of God’s nature.

Tucked between how Love isn’t easily angered and how Love doesn’t delight in evil is a powerful thought; Love keeps no record of wrongs…

Jesus, Love in human form, hanging on a cross between heaven and earth, His flesh torn, his body battered, His hands and feet pierced, the lie of separation a veil between Him and the Father, cutting Him off from sensing His Fathers affection; Jesus revealed the powerful sovereignty of Love. Confronting the arrogance of humanistic thought (what seems right to a man) He kept no record of the worst wrong humanity has ever committed:

“Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.”

The power in those stunning words!

Do you know what happened when He kept no record of our wrongs?

He couldn’t justify His right to be offended.

And all creation was rebirthed in this powerful conclusion; “…neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers,  neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Offense happens. And sometimes it’s horrific. But keeping a record of the offense is a sign that we’re headed down a dangerous road.

Road signs have two purposes: they let us know where we are, and they let us know where we are going. Personal offense or “keeping a record of wrongs,” is a road sign that we are headed toward bondage instead of freedom.

The key to freedom isn’t about not being offended—it’s about keeping no record.

I am not writing about somehow magically forgetting an offense. That would be emotionally and intellectually dishonest. Nor am I writing about trust; trust is earned over time and circumstances, and it can be lost in a moment.

I am writing about choosing to forgive. I am writing about not staying offended.

Forgiveness is the expression of honor that Jesus consistently and ultimately revealed on the cross. Forgiveness is a choice that can be made regardless of what the offender has done.

When we forgive, we choose to keep no records of wrong, we choose to not stay offended, to “not count someone’s sin against them.” And in so doing, we set ourselves free from a right to our offense.

Keeping no record of wrongs means another person doesn’t get to determine whether we are free; another person doesn’t get to control the narrative of our hearts with their offense.

This freedom is a beautiful and powerful thing. It creates a heart culture in us of reconciliation and restored relationship. It is the beautiful evidence of self-control, the Holy Spirit at work within us. It is the partnership with Jesus that brings great joy and life and wholeness to our relationships, it is “on earth as it is in heaven.”

I am leaning into what Jesus modeled and gave me as an inheritance, I am learning to keep no record of the wrongs done to me, and I am walking in greater freedom and transformation. I invite you into this same joy!


Jason Clark
is a writer, speaker and lead communicator at A Family Story Ministries. His mission is to encourage sons and daughters to grow sure in the love of an always-good heavenly Father. He and his wife, Karen, live in North Carolina with their three children.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

YOU ALSO MIGHT LIKE…

Put Your Sword Away

Peter believed Jesus’ kingdom on earth would need swords and men willing to use them. It would require sacrifice, the willingness to die for Jesus, and also, the willingness to kill for Jesus…

Doubting Thomas?: Why God Loves Our Questions

I don’t call Thomas “doubting” anymore. He was a man of faith willing to live in the tension of the question so he might discover the whole story, the greater revelation.

Seen and Known

Sometimes He speaks when it’s quiet, and sometimes when its loud. Sometimes it’s inconvenient. Right in the middle of Walmart close to Christmas. Listen. Listen. Don’t miss the chance to connect with His heart. He invites us in. He invites us to not just know Him, but to have an experience of love as we follow through.

What You Believe About God

When we see our Father and become sure in His love, all impossibilities become possibilities—it’s called heaven on earth.

How the 1980s, R.E.M., Siri, and the Pursuit of Transforming Knowledge all Fit Together

“It’s the end of the world as we know it,” The fella singing was earnest and angsty. The song was hopeful, punchy, and sincere. I loved it. I wanted to listen to it over and again. But I had no idea who it was. These were the wonder years of my musically formative youth. These were the 80’s.

Deliver Us from Obligation

What an honor to go where he leads, to hear that voice that comes with inspiration and to recognize where it came from. A few years ago, I would have thought the voice in my heart was the voice of laziness. I mean, of course, I don’t want to work..but I should right? WRONG! I do what my Father inspires me to do, and where He leads, I follow. It’s not the other way around even though He is faithful to follow me with His love no matter what.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share This

Share this post with your friends!