So, there’s our mission statement for Lent: “Be perfect as your heavenly Father is perfect.” Our righteousness needs to exceed that of everyone else, or we will be missing out on the kingdom of God.
So how far do we go with that? Love our enemies? Pray for those who persecute us? I mean, that’s real easy to hear until we actually think about it, isn’t it? Those people who gossip about us, cut us off in traffic, make a ruckus in our neighborhoods until all hours of the night, tell off-color jokes in social situations – well it’s nice to hold onto a grudge against them, isn’t it? And are we supposed to be forgiving of terrorists, and all those people who hate us and our way of life?
Well, yes we are. We are if we want to be called children of our heavenly Father. And who doesn’t want that? Who knows: maybe when we stop letting them irritate us and instead begin to pray for them and even forgive them, maybe then we will start seeing them in a new light. They might not change, but we will, and we need to be concerned about our relationship with God – that’s what’s really at stake in all these situations.
Who do I need to forgive today?