June 13, 2012

Because of the Hardness of Your Hearts

Have you ever studied forgiveness? If you have you may have already stumbled upon what I am relearning today. Check out Matthew 19:8


"He said to them, “Moses, because of the hardness of your hearts, permitted you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it was not so."

Here is a scripture where Jesus answers the question, "Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for just any reason?" While you and I may not be in a position where our spouses are contemplating divorce, or separation, I want to encourage you to look deeper at the answer Jesus gave in response.

...because of the hardness of your hearts...

Did you catch that? Jesus looked beyond the circumstance and nailed the real issue.  Has someone, even your spouse, done something that you feel is unforgivable? If your heart is hard, you will be unable to forgive them. Your relationship will be destined to fail.

Jesus never turns away the repentant sinner. Neither should I.

(Hard swallow). If I harden my heart by clinging to my own pain, my own hurt, my own rights, my own expectations then I can easily believe that I am justified in my unforgiveness. Truth is, that is a lie from the enemy of our souls and families. My marriage and  relationships are profoundly affected by the condition of my heart. My flesh hates this.

When someone hurts my feelings, or wounds my heart the last thing I want to do is forgive them. In fact, my flesh loves to marinate in that nasty pride that can whisper to my intellect, "See they are a bigger sinner than you". 

Jesus would whisper to our spirit, "harden not your heart".

It is out of obedience that I share this with you today. My prayer is that both you and I would be so wrapped up in our loving God that when someone around us falls, sins, or wounds our heart that we would be quick to forgive.

May it never be so that a relationship of mine (or yours) fails because of a hard heart.

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