Karen

Moving Toward Forgiveness

April 27, 2018 in Inspirational

I have a new book coming out soon called What a Great Word!  I’m excited about the book because it takes rather common words we find in Scripture and offers us a new perspective, or another way we might look at those words.  After the recent experience that Bruce and I had with the incredibly careless and deceitful moving company that packed us up haphazardly, broke many of our things, lost some of our favorite items and yet took no ownership of their own craziness, I had to pull a word out of my own book because I was so appalled by this experience. From the company president, to the dispatchers, to the moving guys, we have seldom witnessed such horrid behavior.  The word I needed then is “forgiveness.”

This past few days, I’ve been reviewing my book to make some minor changes for the publisher and when I got to the word “forgiveness,” I found that I had written this:

“Lord, when my fellow believer sins against me, how many times must I forgive him? Should I forgive him as many as seven times?” Jesus answered, “I tell you, you must forgive him more than seven times. You must forgive him even if he wrongs you seventy times seven.”  Matthew 18:21–22, NCV

Wait a minute! Does this mean if someone does something that feels like a slight, like an intentional act that hurts you, you need to forgive them, not just once, but 490 times? Exactly!
You probably don’t have a chart that tells you how many times you’ve forgiven someone who hurt you. In fact, you may feel that what happened was so wrong that you stopped counting at number one. You stopped counting and you stopped forgiving in the same moment. Certainly, human beings are accountable for many horrendous acts, sometimes repeating them numerous times. Someone in your life may have hurt you more times than you can count.

What does it mean then to move past the hurt, to move past the event that caused you sorrow and get to the place where your heart is willing to forgive? Perhaps the best example is to look at your relationship with God. Would you say that you have offended God by your actions at least once? Twice? Maybe even 490 times? The fact is that God’s love is so enormous that He does not count your offences. He does not keep a chart of the wrongs you have done because once you have asked Him to forgive you, He forgives, once and for all. He does not hold a grudge and He remembers your sin no more. Imagine that. He doesn’t ever think about what you did to slight Him ever again.

When you let go of your past hurts, the offences that have weighed you down for years, you don’t have to replay them in your mind any more. You can give yourself permission to move beyond what was and discover more of what God has for you. The offence will not go away, the offender will not be absolved, but you will be free to start again. Perhaps it’s time to simply forgive others as God has forgiven you, not for the other person, but for yourself.

 

I read this piece several times and as I did so, I thought about each person from this moving company.  Each one lied. Each one denied any sense of responsibility for the incredible amount of damage they had done to our household goods.  Sure, the human side of me is angry.  I believe that they should admit their sins.  But that is as far as I can take it.  I leave them in God’s hands because it’s time to move on to forgiveness.  I forgive them, not for their sake, but for my own, so that I can love my new home and start again in God’s grace.  After all, I know how many times He has forgiven me.

I look forward to sharing more about life in Savannah with all of you in the days ahead.  Blessings to you today.

 

Karen

Chosen and Forgiven…Always!

May 6, 2012 in Inspirational

Therefore, as God’s choice, holy and loved, put on compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience.  Be tolerant with each other and, if someone has a complaint against anyone, forgive each other. As the Lord forgave you, so also forgive each other. And over all these things put on love, which is the perfect bond of unity.

Colossians 3: 12-14

 

God Chose You!

Sure, God could have passed you by.  He could have decided that you had too many issues, too much ego, too many sins to deal with.  He could have thought you were just too much trouble.  He could have.  But he didn’t.

In fact, he looked at you with the eyes of compassion and thought how wonderful it would be if you could see yourself as the whole and beautiful person he sees when he looks at you.  He thought about your willingness to be tender at just the right moments and your ability to tolerate those who aren’t quite like you.  He saw you in a way that raised you up above the turmoil and the mess that life can be and he determined that everything about you was good.  He chose you.

He forgave you those things that you keep buried inside, hardly able to forgive yourself.  He forgave you the little sins of omission, the little promises you made to him, but didn’t keep.  He forgave you the sins of commission that he knows you learned from and needed help with afterwards.  He forgave you for so many things.   He wants you to understand the power of forgiveness and the reason why you must forgive others who have offended you.  He did all of that for you because he chose you.

Today, He wants you to go out and walk in love, share your heart and do whatever you can to bring peace and kindness to just one other person.  You have been forgiven, loved, and entrusted with this one job.  You have been chosen. Show him what you’re doing with his unending love for you.  Make him proud!

 

Excerpt from Wellspring by Karen Moore

Karen

What We Expect…from Ourselves!

January 4, 2010 in Inspirational

Every time a New Year begins, I get enthusiastic about starting over.  I love the idea of planting new dreams and discovering new things.  I love to set an expectation for all that can be and all that I hope will be.  The hard part about all this is that setting those expectations sounds good at the beginning, but then slowly, the reality of actually creating them becomes the thorn in the flesh.  That’s where I have to face the truth of me.  Will I really keep my gym membership after two months have passed, or will I start to sluff off once March comes, giving myself all kinds of reasons for no longer needing to keep that goal?  Yes, setting expectations can be helpful, even wise, but how can we also set them in a way that by the time this year ends, we can be pleased with the result?

For some of us, whether we write regularly, want to lose weight, want to find a partner, or want to invest in the future in a new way, setting the bar to achieve the goal is a good thing.  The trouble comes when we create the plan and then disappoint ourselves.  Sometimes the worst critics in our lives are the constant  companions who live in our heads ready to remind us of our poor choices, our  moments of failure.  Perhaps there is some wisdom in getting a bit older because for me,  expectations are finally being set with  forgiveness.  Forgiveness for those poor choices, those odd decisions, those moments when the people in my normal sphere of influence are shaking their heads and wondering what I could possibly be thinking…expectation and forgiveness just have to walk closely together.

Whatever your goals might be for this year, build in some flexibility, some opportunity to receive new information, some forgiveness for letting go of a plan here or there that didn’t serve you, whether it was for great reasons or no reason.  It seems to me that the more we learn to be forgiving to ourselves, to allow our expectations to change and our opportunities to be more fluid, the more we’re able to accept those very things in others.  Our need for those around us to perform to our standards changes and we can humbly appreciate them and lovingly accept them just as they are.

So…let’s set some goals, strive to achieve them and then give ourselves the flexibility to let God intervene in His own way, revise our plans and forgive our foibles.  As we remember how much He does that for us, we’ll also remember to do that for ourselves and those we love.  It’s a New Year, a new chance to let go of those things that aren’t worth hanging on to and discovering those things that keep us looking up.   Let’s turn down our self-critics!  Let’s build up new hope.  Let’s expect God’s best!    If we do, we’ll surely enjoy a great new year!

Karen

Love Can Build a Bridge

October 16, 2009 in Inspirational

We’re all in the bridge building business; civil engineers making a way where there isn’t one.  We fill the gaps and find the spaces where hearts and minds meet.  We’re parents, building roads to communication to make it easier for our kids to come home.  We’re spouses creating connections we hope will be unshakeable no matter what comes along.  We are about connection, changing strangers into friends, so we can share this beautiful world together.

One of my favorite songs from The Judds is called Love Can Build a Bridge. The words of the chorus say,

Love can build a bridge
Between your heart and mine
Love can build a bridge
Don’t you think it’s time?

How does love build a bridge?  Sometimes it lays a foundation of forgiveness.  It creates a way over the murky waters of injured pride or misunderstanding and lays the groundwork for peace.  Sometimes it simply shows up, not allowing the silence to become deadening,  but reaching out, gently calling until the voices of compassion and reason can be found again.  Sometimes it lightens the load by bringing a sense of humor to a tense moment, offering everyone involved a chance to see more clearly and find the way back to each other.  No matter what tool it devises, love, or forgiveness, or laughter, it’s really always about the same thing…connecting hearts together.

I think Simon and Garfunkel really said it best when they began the lyrics to Bridge Over Troubled Waters with…

When you’re weary, feeling small,
When tears are in your eyes, I will dry them all;
I’m on your side, when times get rough
And friends just can’t be found,
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down.

One of the best things about this idea is that it is a concept Our Creator has been trying to share with us all of our lives.  He’s always about finding the ways to build a relationship with us, create a connection that is sure and steadfast.  It was with that intention that He sent His Son into the world to be our bridge, to get us home safely again.  It’s the ultimate understanding of how love can build a bridge when you couple the events we call Christmas and Easter and understand the principles behind what they really mean.

We have an incredible example, an extraordinary bridge builder to follow, who invites us to be the bridges over troubled waters, to be the link of forgiveness, the support for the weary, the place where peace may prevail. It may be worth it today to take a moment and consider the gaps in our own lives, the spaces that have fallen between conversations that need to be continued, the misunderstandings that never seem to find a way to be reconciled, the hearts that could be mended by a gift of love or your warm smile.

Have no fear, you won’t be the only one on the bridge looking for a way back and forth.  You may see old friends there who have waited to reconnect with you, waited to take your hand again.  We’re so good at social networking these days, we Twitter and we FaceBook and we get LinkedIn, but could we benefit too from standing in the gaps for each other, building the bridges to keep us nicely connected so no matter how far away we might get, when we’re weary and feeling small, we know how to get safely home again.

Love can build a bridge
Between your heart and mine
Love can build a bridge…
Don’t you think it’s time?

Meet you on the bridge.  Big love to you today.