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Offences and forgiveness today (II)

In the first instalment of this life-changing-piece, I shared with you that it is impossible for faith to work without rolling the stone of offences away from your heart. Many people’s faith is not working, because they have chosen not to forgive those who have offended them. For your faith to begin to work, I counsel that you release from your heart—those whom have offended you.

Also, I shared with you that it can be very hard sometimes to forgive, especially when it involves those whom you have once taken sweet counsel together, those whom you love very dearly. I told you that praying for those whom have offended you will help you to find it possible to forgive them. This has worked for me over the years and I am sure it will work for you too, if you will work it out in shoe-leather.

In this second instalment, I am going to be sharing with you on being forgotten and rejected without being offended. And I am going to share with you on how faith walks through love and the many faces (order, separation, discipline, honour…) of love.

Kindly understand that faith works through love. Without walking in love, faith cannot work. In other words, you cannot have hate in your heart and be in faith, so to walk in faith, you will need to kick hate out of your heart and embrace love, love that is devoid of hypocrisy. This is the stance of God when it comes to love—it must be without hypocrisy.

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When I was very young as a believer, one of the subjects that confused me was love. You know love always wears different faces of different folks. And if care is not taken, you will not know what love truly is. To understand love in those days, I needed to carefully study two models: the man Jesus and Abraham. They lived by faith and walked in love.

Like I did say, true love is usually devoid of hypocrisy and walking in love does not mean walking away from justice, order, discipline, honour, sincerity and honesty. Chastisement is part of love and true love is never sloppy. It can be very confrontational, tough and sacrificial. It is never translucent and it is always transparent.

Take for instance, before labouring with other Christ-loving and kingdom-seeking-people to pioneer the Faith for the Nations Christian Centre, a global assembly that I pastor at Ikeja, Lagos State, I was in the corporate world for a very long time. For example, if I am hosting a workshop, all my guest speakers must submit to me as far as the training is concerned, even if they are my mentors, fathers and mothers. I must submit to them too when I am their guest.

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Now, it is unethical and out of order for a guest speaker to do anything with my audience without routing it through me. If it happens, the guest speaker will be forgiven, but we may not work together again. I will love him or her from afar, because he or she has betrayed my trust. Love is unconditional, but trust is conditional. There is so much indiscipline in the Body of Christ, because we do not understand what it means to walk in love. Walking in love is not walking away from truth and the Truth!

Strife is unhealthy, but separation is healthy on the condition that it is the only way to follow peace and avoid strife. For Abraham and Lot to remain as brothers, they had to separate. Did Abraham stop loving him? No! When Lot entered into a trouble that he could not handle, it was Abraham—who rescued him and after rescuing him, they still went their separate ways.

Separation is not evil. And it is not wrong to love people from afar like the case of Abraham and Lot. Take for instance, you confide in a friend and the friend in question goes to those close to you and share the information with them and lure them away from you. What do you do? You must forgive, but it is not healthy to continue to keep the person close to your heart, because God cares about your sanity. You may need to go right while the person is question goes left. I know I am touching on issues that people like to run away from in ministry.

Also, walking in love does not mean walking away from honour and order. Our God esteems the principles of honour and order very highly. And one of the faces of love is honour. And one of the faces of love is order. You may need to walk away from places—where you are dishonoured and—where there is disorder. You cannot find God where there is dishonour and disorder. Why should you be found where God is not?

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How about the issue of rejection? Being rejected can be very tough to handle. I have been rejected, so I know what I am touching on here. How did I handle my own season of rejection? I saw it as God using it to redirect me. I saw it as part of my process. I saw that same time I was rejected, God was behind the scenes, sending me ahead of the generation I would lead in future. This understanding helped me a great deal to forgive!

To become great in the hand of God, you will need to go through your own season of rejection, too. And if you will see rejection as I saw it, it will help you a great deal to forgive those who reject you. For you to become the Chief-corner-stone in the days to come, you (the stone) will need to be first rejected today. For Jephthah to become a leader tomorrow, he will need to be rejected today. All things will always work together for your good.

Lastly, forgiveness is never a walk in the park. And handling a deep-seated hurt can be very tough. Many people teach as if every offence is on same level. There are offences and there are offences. There are offences that cannot be forgiven overnight; they can only be forgiven overtime. The reason is because some hurts take time to heal. You want me to be used of God to counsel you on this issue and other issues of life? Then send me a mail ([email protected]) or fellowship with me this Sunday at 9AM at the Faith For The Nations Christian Centre (the Faith Place), Watercress Hotels (Conference Hall), 48, Oritshe Street, By Balogun Bus Stop, Ikeja.

 

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