God made you alive together with him, when he forgave us all our trespasses.
There are thoughts and behaviors that have become a normal part of our lives. When we first began them, they seemed to be natural to us, or we thought they would get us something that we desired, or we told ourselves that whatever the side effects, they were minimal.
Then, over time, we may have noticed that those very things that seemed so innocuous have become our prisons. Even if they are not evil or immoral, we know that they have tainted our soul as surely as if we had dropped a glass of wine on a cream-colored sofa.
It seems as if everyone can see the stain, and no matter what our efforts to remove it, there’s always a residue, a remnant of its presence. Although it may be lighter, it’s still visible to anyone who really looks. We long to be free of that which binds us and have the carefree spirit that once was ours.
Forgiveness is the gift that we are given when we finally acknowledge that we have spilled the wine in our lives. Just when we come to the realization that what we are doing and thinking has fallen short of what was promised, we sense the forgiveness of heaven, sitting in the corner waiting for us to reach out for it.
It’s never a harsh or uncompromising encounter. We just need a simple desire, expressed fully from the soul, to be free of the stain that has brought death in the midst of life. In that moment of expression, divine forgiveness meets and fills us. In that holy meeting, the stain is suddenly gone, and life is ready to be grasped again.
Gracious God, never let me be so despairing of the choices I’ve made, that I am unwilling to feel the gift of your forgiving spirit.