What motivates you to do the impossible?
What motivates you to do the impossible? What truth(s) could/should God place before your soul in order that you would die to self (impossible), honor God (impossible), and love your neighbor (not the ones who love you first–but you know, the one impossible to love)?
Take for example, forgiveness. As hard as it is (indeed; impossible) to admit wrong and ask for forgiveness, it seems many folks struggle even more (indeed impossible) to grant forgiveness. What truths would motivate you to grant forgiveness?
Many counseling systems would teach that an essential truth is: I must know that I am worthy, valuable, and loved.
Hmmmmmmmm….does that teaching cohere with Christ? Is that what the Bible actually says?
In the two prime texts commanding us to grant forgiveness to those who seek it, we are actually motivated (by God) with MUCH different truths….
1. You owe God 10,000 talents (an impossible amount to pay; Matt 18:24)
1. You are a Samaritan leper (an impossible condition to rectify; Luke 17:12, 16; BTW: I take it that the teaching on the “kind” of faith that forgives stretches from verse 5 through verse 19)
2. God is forgiving Master to those who repent and seek forgiveness (Matt 18:27)
2. Jesus is a merciful Master (Luke 17:13)
These two truths are the truths your soul needs to do the impossible. If you would forgive someone who commits the same sin against you seven times in the same day and seeks your forgiveness, then you must actually remember that you are the Samaritan leper who owes 10,000 talents AND that God has been merciful to you. Beloved, it is NOT so much that one must think less of the themselves, but that one must have less thinking of self.
The ideas expressed in the first group are meant to kill self-sufficiency and self-reliance. You can not more muster forgiveness from yourself as you could pay 10,000 talents or change your ethnicity or cure your leprosy.
oh….and by the way, when you are commended to love an enemy (Luke 6:27ff.) the motivation is the same. You are the ungrateful and evil (Luke 6:35) and God is the merciful (Luke 6:36)….and it is the same in Ephesians 2…. go and see the truths of 2:12 needed to reconcile and restore warring people…
May we all remember, not our worth, but our debt and our destitution…and His mighty salvation.
10,000 Blessings in The Wonderful Counselor,