Then Jacob looked up and saw Esau coming with his 400 men. So he divided the children among Leah, Rachel, and his two servant wives. He put the servant wives and their children at the front, Leah and her children next, and Rachel and Joseph last. Then Jacob went on ahead. As he approached his brother, he bowed to the ground seven times before him. Then Esau ran to meet him and embraced him, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him. And they both wept. Genesis 33:1-11
I love this story. This is wisdom and forgiveness at its best. Jacob humbles himself to ask for forgiveness bowing seven times showing respect to Esau. Esau, ran to meet him with an embrace. Asking for forgiveness is hard to do; giving it is even harder. Asking for forgiveness is admitting you were wrong not only to yourself, but to the person you wronged. The next step is for the other person to give that forgiveness and this is even harder when you feel you have been wronged. When I am confronted with forgiving someone who has hurt me or someone that I love, I have to remind myself that Jesus forgave me when I didn’t deserve His forgiveness. Yet, he gave it anyway. This Bible story is a story of forgiveness. It reminds us that time does heal wounds and that most importantly we have to talk with God about our hurts so that he can help us heal and forgive others. Forgiveness isn’t for the person we are forgiving, it is for us. It allows us to let go of bitterness that turns into hatred. These things harden our hearts. God doesn’t want that for us.
Guard your hearts above all else, for it determines the course of your life. Proverbs 4:23
Give your hurts to Jesus and let him soften your heart and bring you peace.
Dear Jesus, we know that forgiveness is not something we can do on our own. Please help us to turn to You when forgiving someone is needed. We ask Lord that You also humble us so that we may ask for forgiveness as well. In Your Name, Amen.