Tag Archives: Victory

Weeding Out Unforgiveness

 

WEEDING OUT UNFORGIVENESS

By Carolyn Dale Newell

I said, ‘Plant the good seeds of righteousness,
and you will harvest a crop of love.
Plow up the hard ground of your hearts,
for now is the time to seek the Lord,
that he may come
and shower righteousness upon you.’

Hosea 10:12 NLT

I opened the door knowing the moment I stepped inside, resentment could capture my heart. Forgiveness had been a long time coming. Distance had helped, but what would happen when I see them in person?

Grudges had developed after each time I was uninvited. The times they never spoke. The times they left me sitting alone. The times I felt invisible.

When we fail to forgive, bitterness takes root (Heb. 12:15). Then the next time they slight you, that root grows deeper, until a grudge has formed.

Instead of immediately forgiving each incident, I held onto my anger. Forgiveness cannot grow in hard hearts.

Like a garden, the soil must be plowed up, for the seeds to grow. God must plow up the hard ground of our hearts, the fallow ground as the King James Version calls it.

Fallow ground is the earth which hasn’t been plowed for at least one year, according to Easton’s Bible Dictionary. Weeds and thorns prevent the good seed from growing there unless it is plowed.

Breaking up that hard ground is painful. Think of the plowing process. Even a hoe repeatedly striking the ground, breaking it into smaller chunks, can be uncomfortable.

Forgiveness is not an option. It is a command. When they insult us, they insult God? If God forgives, why can’t we?

The seeds of forgiveness were hindered by the weeds and thorns of an unforgiving heart. They had to be dug up, plowed up, and removed to leave fertile soil for the seeds of forgiveness to flourish.

As I left, stepping into the cool night air, I thanked God. Finally, He had the victory. No hard feelings arose. No replay in my mind of each wrong-doing. God had done a work on my bitter, hard heart. I had forgiven them. Now a crop of love can flourish. Loving one another includes forgiving one another.

Looking back, I see my mistakes. I kept hitting rewind on every incident, playing it over and over in my mind. Instead, I should have sought forgiveness, and spent more time in prayer.

We must stop harping on the hurt and start focusing on the forgiveness.

After all, God has forgiven them, and He has forgiven me so much more. He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, to die in my place for every one of my sins. Even the sin of unforgiveness.

Friend, if you find yourself unable to forgive,ask God to help you. Beg Him for victory over the root of bitterness. Refuse to dredge up the pain. Strive for forgiveness. We are never more like God than when we forgive.

Lord, enable me to forgive (insert name). Plow up the weeds and thorns of resentment. Destroy the root of bitterness. On my own, I cannot do this. It is only through You that I can forgive. I give You the praise, honor, and glory now for the victory You will have in my heart. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

DIG DEEPER

Read Matthew 18:23-35.

HIKING THE TRAIL

Forgiving isn’t easy. As a matter of fact, it is extremely difficult, but we cannot allow the sin of unforgiveness to feel at home in our hearts. Draw close to God, continually in prayer until He has given you victory.

Copyright 2018 Carolyn Dale Newell.

 

I will have limited internet service while I am on a writing retreat for the next several weeks. Therefore, I will not be posting on my blog. I will be back with a new post in late August. God bless!

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Does The Devil Wear Green

DOES THE DEVIL WEAR GREEN

By Carolyn Dale Newell

For where envy and self-seeking exist, confusion and every evil thing are there.

James 3:16 (NKJV)

 Have you ever been overcome with jealousy? We don’t want to feel jealous, but there is   Satan, in green, shooting those fiery arrows right to our hearts. I’ll be enjoying someone’s blog, and when I see their double-digit likes, that is the moment of attack. How do they get that many likes when I only have two? Jealousy rushes in, stirring up fleshy feelings that I want to crush. The enemy begins to whisper. His hissing tells me that my work isn’t good enough. He attempts to convince me that I am wasting my time.

Maybe he strikes you in a different way. Like when someone else can afford the beach vacation, the new car, or the cute outfit, but you can’t. Perhaps her child never acts up in the store while yours cries loudly. He may show up in various shades, but he is always green.

Once there was a jealous king, Saul. He was so envious of David that he made numerous attempts to kill him, hunting him down like an animal. David had slain Goliath. He had killed many more men than Saul. Everyone loved David, even Saul’s children, especially Jonathan.

This true friend had every right to be jealous of David. Jonathan was the rightful heir to the throne, but God was removing the throne from Saul’s family, and David would be the next king. Rather than being jealous of David, Jonathan helped him dodge Saul’s murderous plots.

How did Jonathan remain a true friend without giving jealousy a foothold? “Submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you” (James 4:7). Jonathan not only resisted the temptation to be jealous, he went one step further when he helped David escape.

Friend, jealousy is no small sin. James says that where envy exists, evil is always present.

Jealous arrows may strike us, but they don’t have to stick. Let’s wholeheartedly cheer others on when they succeed and God blesses them. Focus on Jonathan as our example, and Satan with his green garb will flee from us.

Heavenly Father,

Cleanse and forgive us of all jealousy! Put such a love in our hearts for one another that the jealous darts cannot penetrate. Thank You, amen.

DIG DEEPER

Read 1 Sam. 20. How deep was Jonathan’s love for David?

HIKING THE TRAIL

Every time jealousy arises, take it to God. Ask God to give you victory in this area.

Copyright 2015 Carolyn Dale Newell.