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The Grace to Forgive

Today’s Reflection

WHEN PETER ASKED JESUS if he should forgive others as many as seven times, Jesus answered, “Not seven times, but, I tell you, seventy-seven times” (Matthew 18:22). Obviously he was not saying mark off each forgiveness up to seventy-seven and then stop forgiving. He was wiping out all calculated response both to ourselves and to others. He threw a legalism of checks and balances out the window. He invited us to a wider place, a freer air, where compassion and mercy are no longer a matter of arithmetic.

But until we let God release us, we cannot release ourselves or others. We remain in that condition of self-judgment, a judgment of others, that spiritual prison, anxiously counting up those pennies!

God longs to enter these prisons of ours, throw open the doors, bring us into what theologians call “grace” – the realm of free gifting – not to earn love but because we are already loved.

– Flora Slosson Wuellner
Forgiveness, the Passionate Journey

From page 117 of Forgiveness, the Passionate Journey: Nine Steps of Forgiving Through Jesus’ Beatitudes by Flora Slosson Wuellner. Copyright © 2001 by Flora Slosson Wuellner. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Give thanks for God’s grace. Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

On the day after the passover, on that very day, they ate the produce of the land, unleavened cakes and parched grain.

The manna ceased on the day they ate the produce of the land, and the Israelites no longer had manna; they ate the crops of the land of Canaan that year.

Joshua 5:11-12, NRSV

This Week: pray for caregivers. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section below.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center web site.

Saints, Inc.:

This week we remember: Katherine Drexel (March 3).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2016 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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{ 7 comments… add one }

  • Jill February 29, 2016, 4:50 am

    Father, indeed – Your Grace is unspeakable and abundant. We are lost without it, without You. Thank You for extending grace to us, again and again, in a myriad of ways.
    Grateful to be home safely. Grateful to hear of Annaliese’s successful surgery and a good start on the road to recovery. Grateful for the time away, time spent with family and hours just staring at the blue water and hearing the rhythm of the waves. So good to be reunited with my family here. Another example of Our Father’s Grace.

  • robert moeller February 29, 2016, 5:31 am

    Thankful that Jill had a good time away and a safe return. Anneliese’s progress continues, the therapists at the rehab think she is ahead of schedule.
    Thankful for resources to help Erich with his recurring skin problem. Thankful for progress on my model. Most of all I’m thankful for God’s love and grace, they enable everything. Thank You, Lord.

    Prayers for caregivers, God empowers them, we pray for them, and God’s will is done. Thank You, Lord. I pray too for those in prison, may they come to know You, Lord. Prayers for Carol McNall and Warren Dobert. Blessings to all who come to the UR. Gathered in Jesus’ name, you will find Him. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling February 29, 2016, 5:58 am

    Thank you Father God for Anneliese speedy recovery.

    Thank you for forgiving us and your amazing grace.

    Thank you for all the caregivers in this world. May you continue to strengthen them and refresh them daily. Bless them and grant them the joy of caring for others.

  • Rusty February 29, 2016, 6:46 am

    Today’s reading reminded me of the old Anglican Collect for Grace from Daily Morning Prayer.

    O Lord, our heavenly Father, almighty and everlasting God, who hast safely brought us to the beginning of this day: Defend us in the same with thy mighty power; and grant that this day we fall into no sin, neither run into any kind of danger; but that we, being ordered by thy governance, may do always what is righteous in thy sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

    We, of course, shall not succeed in falling into “no sin” but that is where we need to rely on God’s grace and mercies. So grateful, Lord, for your lovingkindness. May I pray the Collect for Grace from deep within my heart and endeavor heartily to live in ways that are right. Blessings and grace to all who come here today. Prayers for you, Robert, in your caregiving role. Lord, please grant your grace and mercy to all caregivers.

    • Betsy February 29, 2016, 7:22 am

      Thank you, Rusty, for that additional prayer!

  • Sara February 29, 2016, 8:27 am

    God of Grace – thank you!! You, Lord, supply our needs.

    Thankful Anneliese is doing well and Jill, glad you had a refreshing time away. Rusty, you have many wonderful suggestions for prayers, etc. thank you.

    Blessings today for the UR who gather here to share and give wonderful ideas and comments to help us on our spiritual journey. Prayers for caregivers who give so freely of themselves. God, I ask You to bless and be with us and our families on this Monday morning. Amen

  • Andrea February 29, 2016, 2:48 pm

    It’s good to hear Anneliese is progressing and I continue to pray for her and for you, Robert.

    Gracuius God, may I continue to grow in forgiveness. I am thankful for a road trip last week with a friend; and an upcoming trip to visit my daughter, son-in-law and grandson. Being a grandmother is a joy, not only for having a precious little baby to love and cuddle, but also for how it has deepened the relationship between my daughter and me. Gratitude.

    I ask for your continued prayers for an undiagnosed skin condition I’ve had since last summer. Diet changes have made a difference and the itching has lessened but still persists.

    Thankful for this holy time of year and for signs of spring.

    May God bless each of you who visits here, and your dear ones, and all your prayer intentions. May God bless caregivers, an honored role to be called to, and demanding and challenging. May caregivers find spiritual, mental and physical refreshment and rest. Amen.

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