Wednesday 20 August, 2014

Matthew 18:15-22

15 “If your brother sins against you, go to him. Tell him what he did wrong. Keep it between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won him back. 16 “But what if he won’t listen to you? Then take one or two others with you. Scripture says, ‘Every matter must be proved by the words of two or three witnesses.’ (Deuteronomy 19:15) 17 But what if he also refuses to listen to the witnesses? Then tell it to the church. And what if he refuses to listen even to the church? Then don’t treat him as your brother. Treat him as you would treat an ungodly person or a tax collector. 18 “What I’m about to tell you is true. What you lock on earth will be locked in heaven. What you unlock on earth will be unlocked in heaven. 19 “Again, here is what I tell you. Suppose two of you on earth agree about anything you ask for. My Father in heaven will do it for you. 20 Where two or three people meet together in my name, I am there with them.” 21 Peter came to Jesus. He asked, “Lord, how many times should I forgive my brother when he sins against me? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but 77 times.

God thinks relationships are really important – relationship with Him and with those around us. Here is one of those great but annoying things that Jesus tells us about having great relationships. We need to be willing to have difficult conversations and we need to be willing to forgive and keep on forgiving.

Difficult conversations need to happen when we have done the wrong thing by someone or when someone has done the wrong thing by you. But such conversations need to be full of love. They need to be planned as well. We shouldn’t do them when we are full of emotion about the situation. Mixing a desire to rebuild relationship and the idea of always being forgiving tells us how we should approach these conversations.

Thank you Lord that you created relationships and that life is so much richer for them. We need help to adopt the attitudes Jesus taught us. Please help us Lord particularly to be forgiving.

Written by Therese Manning

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