Fully Reverse the Curse
My own sermon yesterday is coming back to convict me personally. I presented strong arguments along the line of our need to fully reverse the curse with at least as much forgiveness as there has been offense. Forgiveness is the only solvent that can neutralize the hardness caused by offenses. The resistance to letting go of offenses is the greatest danger for our souls, for that very resistance if not released and flushed out of our systems will be the fuel for the fires of hell whenever we become exposed to the powerful current of God's passionate love and forgiveness.
How is the Spirit applying this to my own heart? I have become aware over the years of the immense reservoir of rage that yet resides deep inside of me threatening at any provocation to burst out like a volcano and destroy my life, my reputation and my credibility as a truthful witness for the truth about God. I have long been intimidated by this reservoir buried deep beneath the surface of my adult life. Sometimes some person is able to tap into that dangerous pit and the resulting outburst is frightening in the least. I have been aware of it existence for some years now but have been at a loss as to what to do about it. My only hope is to continue praying that God will heal me in whatever ways He knows best.
Upon reflection of the insights I recently gained about this issue of forgiveness needing to go the full extent of the curse that caused all the damage in the first place based on the seventy times seven pattern in the Bible, it suddenly occurred to me that this principle is very significant to my own situation. The principle of proportional forgiveness, that we can only experience forgiveness to the same extent as we are willing to extend it to others, suddenly takes on very practical application for my own impasse. I am beginning to see that the only power that will ever deliver me from this deep seething pit of rage hidden inside is not to vent it fully enough to become free of it, for that would only deepen its grip on me; rather my only hope is to choose to forgive any and all who may come into the cross-hairs of my wrath as representatives who need to experience the same forgiveness that I so desperately need to experience for my own healing.
It also came to me this morning that forgiveness itself is one of the main currencies of heaven. Only by dealing in the currency of forgiveness can I ever access the healing grace and power of God for my own soul. By expending forgiveness on others who have either directly offended me or may only be representatives of those in that past who have wounded me deeply, I can release the flow of healing grace through my circuits or channels. And as the grace of healing forgiveness flows through me toward others by my choosing to forgive instead of taking offense, the healing properties of that grace accomplishes the work it does best in my own heart whether or not it ever transforms the other recipients heart that I offer it to.
As forgiveness flows through my own arteries and veins it acts to dissolve the blockages that obstruct the free flow of life-giving blood throughout my own spiritual body. Most people know that blockages in the blood vessels can threaten our life as they restrict the flow of vital nourishment to our heart and brain. These blockages are the resistance that we hold onto as we cling to offenses and lick our own wounds in self sympathy. But in resisting forgiveness for those who have offended us we are increasing the blockages in our own vessels and endangering our own souls far more than we are hurting those around us.
In my case, I am beginning to sense the direction God is likely leading me toward in my own healing journey of salvation. Those who trigger me the most are often connected with abusive faces of authority, whether they be church leaders, police officers or any other sources such as manipulative women who are willing to betray my trust in them. All of these who represent people who have deeply wounded me in the past, who have exploited me, taken advantage of my trust in them or abused their responsibility to look out for my welfare and protection, all are people whom I must now view through the lens of forgiveness rather than desires for revenge.
My rage is completely based on deep cravings to get even, to get revenge, to lash out and deeply hurt someone who either directly has caused me pain or reminds me of such ones. It is the supposed sense of 'justice' as defined by the faulty logic of the world's systems that drives this deep desire for revenge. This craving to inflict pain and suffering and punishment on those who have hurt me to 'settle the score' of my own painful memories is based on false views of justice and false formulas for finding release and freedom. And these counterfeit ideas about how to find justice and peace are constantly reinforced by nearly everyone around us and permeate all of the media that so strongly influences our thinking and feelings.
I am just starting to catch a glimpse of the outlines of the true principles of reality that Jesus came to restore us into so that we can live free. The path into true freedom of soul requires that one be willing to deal in the currency of forgiveness or else there is no hope for healing, for peace and for restoration to wholeness. The only option for a Christian who is truly following the example and instructions of Jesus is to fully engage in a life of unlimited forgiveness. For to set any limits on it whatsoever is to set limits on the degree to which we want to be forgiven by God.
Forgiveness is not a legal transaction however. This is extremely vital to grasp for it to have its intended effect in our lives. As long as we confuse forgiveness with the legal idea of pardon rather than its true meaning of letting go of our own resistance and desires for retaliation, we will remain caught in the vicious cycle of confusion and resentment. Forgiveness is completely about letting go of our desires for retaliation, revenge and cravings to get even. Forgiveness is being willing to bear all the pain without reacting with desires to return the suffering back on those who hurt us. Forgiveness involves turning all of our hopes toward the only trustworthy judge who alone will bring ultimate vindication, healing and restoration to our hearts and souls just as Jesus did.
To make forgiveness more of a legal issue than an issue of resistance at the heart level is to derail the main purpose and neutralize the inherent power of forgiveness in our own souls. It also keeps us in the deceptive darkness of confusion and fear about God and reinforces the lies about Him that make us afraid of Him. This is the main scheme of the enemy who ever wants to keep us far enough away from God who is our only hope of healing that we will finally die from our terminal condition of resentment. Viewing God primarily through the legal view tends to enhance our desire to hang onto our resistance to forgiveness while seeing Him in the healing perspective allows us to see reality from a whole new perspective where we see our desperate need for the healing properties of forgiveness.
The proportional principle of forgiveness as spelled out by Jesus at various times simply describes this truth that we can only experience as much healing for the damage sins have caused inside of us as we are willing to extend the same level of forgiveness toward others. In essence, to allow the healing medicine to flow through our veins and produce the needed healing necessary to restore us back to health, we must have outlets for that flow to extend to others. Unlike our bodies blood system that is a closed, self-contained system of circulation, our soul's circulation system is inextricably connected to those around us. Only as we open the outlets of our connections with others can the blood of Jesus begin to flow through us and bring into our own lives the healing that we offer to others.
I can now see far better than before how the healing model of salvation makes so much more sense than the legal model can ever do. Trying to make things fit into a strictly legal explanation only distorts many things that simply do not fit there at all. We have forced faulty definitions onto nearly all the words in religion in our attempt to prop up the legal view of our relationship with God when most of those terms were never meant to convey that message.
When we begin to examine the true meaning of these words in the context of God as our healer and sin as our sickness rather than an issue of condemnation and pardon, suddenly everything falls into its proper place with each other and the circuitry begins to function as it was originally intended to function. The more we come into alignment with our original design and our health improves, the more alive we can feel and we begin to understand the true meaning of what it means to thrive.
Fully reverse the curse. That is the message I must keep in mind as I cooperate with God in my own healing process. I must experience and extend forgiveness to the full extent of the damage that my own heart has experienced or else I will allow pockets of resistance to remain that will destroy my own life whenever I come into the intense presence of the passion of God's love.