It was great to see a full room even on an “OU-Texas, Columbus Day, Fall Break, Austin City Limits Weekend! These are some of the notes from Week #5…. Hope they are helpful!
Margie and Hixon
REMEMBER: We are trying to build… a great, God-honoring marriage. One that is authentic with no pretend, pretty picture, Facebook facades. Right? One of the biggest hindrances to a marriage like that, is covered today…
Matt. 6:15 … is one of the verses in Scripture that Frankly (pun intended) I wish wasn’t there.
Seriously, I have a list, a short one, but a list nonetheless, of people who I would just prefer to hold a grudge against. These are people I somehow got “sideways with” and I am fine staying that way. It isn’t worth the effort, time or swallowing of pride to make the relationship right again. At least that is what I tell myself. Too honest? Ever felt like that?
Before you judge me too harshly, aren’t we all that way?…sometimes? I mean, don’t you have people in your life that when you think of them you “go there”. Maybe enough time has passed where you are not grinding about it… but it is there. Maybe you are resigned that the relationship isn’t important to you so you don’t care…but you still do. And maybe you simply live your life nurturing the wound so much that the thought of letting it go no longer even occurs to you. Maybe?
What does the verse say, you ask? Matthew 6:15 “… if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.”
What? You mean if I don’t forgive others then God won’t forgive me….um….well….grace of course figures in there somewhere but … yea, we have to forgive others.
Illustration: I remember a pastor friend tell the nightmare of discovering that both his daughter and granddaughter were being emotionally and physically abused by his son-in-law. He recounted the anger and rage he experienced towards both his son-in-law (now former) and even against God. He also told of the struggle, reluctance and finally the breakthrough in coming to a point of forgiveness…he shared it this way…“Except in the case of Jesus, human forgiveness is always followed by a comma and not a period. I cannot forgive and forget. But I can forgive and forgive and forgive and forgive….eventually breaking free from the bondage that a grudge keeps us in. We have to forgive, then keep forgiving. For my own sake and for the sake of the Gospel, (even as a picture of the gospel) I have to let it go!”
Especially in marriage, forgiveness is YUGE!
Most of us, even when we love Jesus, can become unknowingly skilled at:
- pointing the finger.
- leveling charges
- keeping a list of wrongs.
- rehearsing perceived wrongs
- building cases for our behavior
- habits of competition and division.
It makes sense that when a couple is good at these things they are hopeless….
We all get seduced by the power of un-forgiveness (grudges).
1. A Grudge is Power… There is power in having something to hold over our spouses …
2. A Grudge is Identity…holding onto our spouses sin or weakness and failures makes us feel superior…
3. Grudge is Entitlement…because of the wrongs against me I feel that my spouse owes me…
4. A Grudge is Weaponry…very tempting to pull offenses out and use them when we are angry…
5. A Grudge puts us in God’s position…Very tempting to make myself the judge…
6. A Grudge is Bondage…it will not let us go until we break free through forgiveness
CLOSING: When a person understands what they have been forgiven of, and are continually forgiven of, they are much more likely to extend that forgiveness to others. That is never more true than in marriage where forgiveness of the lifeblood of a good relationship.
Jesus FORGAVE US!
Ephesians 2:8-9, Colossians 1:13-15
WE SHOULD FORGIVE OTHERS
Mark 11:24-26, Colossians 3:13,
1 Peter 3:7
Likewise, husbands, live with your wives in an understanding way, showing honor to the woman as the weaker vessel, since they are heirs with you of the grace of life, so that your prayers may not be hindered.
Week #5 Concept Credit to Paul David Tripp – “What Did You Expect?” 2010