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Forgiveness & Trust

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just watched Kevin Max Smith's (formerly of dcTalk) new movie The Imposter last night. it brought up some cool stuff that really got me thinking. how come we expect people to always forgive us cause it's the "Christian thing to do" and then get mad when they don't trust us even after we asked for forgiveness?

forgiveness and trust don't come together as a package you know? when Peter asks Jesus "How many times should I forgive my brother? Seven times?", Jesus answers saying "not seven times, but seventy times seven!" that's 490 times! now Jesus isn't saying here to keep track and count every single time you have to forgive someone, and that on their 491st time you say, HA!, can't forgive you anymore, Jesus said only 490 times! he's saying that when someone asks forgiveness, we aren't to rub their noses in what they've done to us from then on, and that this is something we must continually do, forgive people. Jesus doesn't say however, to immediately place your trust in that person again.

trust comes in time. it is the forgiveness that sets the stage for trust to grow once more where it used to be. while the hurt and pain may rear it's ugly head again and again even after forgiveness, there has to be a healing of the heart and mind for trust to come back, which could take awhile. if you'd like, read the story of Joseph in Genesis. it starts in chapter 37 and goes to around 50, but is an epic account of betrayal, forgiveness and trust.

remember though, just because forgiveness is granted doesn't mean everything is back to normal. to paraphrase one of bryan duncan's songs: love (trust) takes time. and while it's not blind to the wrongs made against it, it's a choice made by both to either sacrifice the right to remember the wrong-doings or to sacrifice their pride and endure the time/pain it takes to stand firm in regaining the trust that was lost.



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