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Monday, September 27, 2004 5:00 PM CDT


One of the great things about being a Christian and a follower of Jesus is that we get to forgive people. Just think, we don't have to waste time carrying grudges or getting mad about stuff that happened to us in the past. We have the opportunity to let it go and forget that it ever happened at all.

I recently saw a young man hug his mother, and it gave me goose bumps. Now you might say, well, so what! Kids hug their mothers all the time. But this mother had made some mistakes in the past. Some mistakes that sons particularly find difficult to forgive, let alone forget. Infidelity can be a tough one, but this kid loves his mom and let it go 'cuz love covers a multitude of sins. Oh, what a boon it was for her and of course for him as well.

Jesus tells us in the Lord's Prayer that we have a special privilege as believers. I especially like they way it's translated in the New English Bible.

"Our Father in heaven,
thy kingdom come,
thy will be done,
on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us the wrong we have done,
as we have forgiven those who have wronged us.

And do not bring us to the test,
but save us from the evil one."

Oh boy that's a big one. See how He slipped that in there! Our forgiveness is based in great part as to how we forgive others. Well, blow me down! I remember the first time that the truth of this wonderful prayer dawned on me. Initially, it wasnÕt that pleasant an experience. It forced me to rebuild quite a few associations and rethink my relationships regarding forgiveness. This becomes a real tit-for-tat deal as far as Jesus is concerned. You see, it's His prayer and His rule for living. Now there are those of us who don't find it in their hearts to refer to themselves as Christians anymore, but they do pride themselves in being followers of Jesus. Well, take pride in this, honey! Forgive us the wrong we have done, as we forgive those who have wronged us. Christian, or follower of Jesus, this one could be a real pain in the neck. Or, you could take the time to understand that it means you get to forgive, and just as importantly you get to be forgiven!

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