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Dozen Long Stemmed Red Roses!

We live in a world that often does not forgive. We tend to hold grudges and look for ways to get even with the person who we think wronged us. We might not say it out loud, but we think to ourselves those words spoken by the Wicked Witch of the West to Dorothy, “I’ll get you, my pretty, and your little dog too!” (The Wizard of Oz)

Most often the person we fail to forgive is ourselves. We have asked the person we wronged for forgiven, they have granted it, but we look in the mirror with remorse and regret, never allowing ourselves to climb out from under the weight of guilt. If you are a Christ follower, once you ask God to forgive your sin, He does, never to hold it against you. Do you believe that? Read Micah 7:19 and Psalm 103:12!

The problem is when we fail to forgive ourselves, even after God and others have, we begin to feel unlovable and we spiral down a dark path from which there is no escaping. The Bible’s overarching theme is that God loves you! You were made in His image (Gen 1:27) and He allowed His only Son, Jesus, to be crucified and die, then resurrecting Him, in order to restore a personal relationship with us, one that was broken due to sin.

If the truth be told, we are more convinced of God’s love for others than for ourselves. Many times we hear that internal whisper, “Yes, but…” after every declaration of God’s goodness and kindness. We see ourselves as unlovable.

You probably know the first few words of the most recognized verse in the Bible – “For God so loved the world…” The world; that excludes no one! Sensing God’s love – grabbing hold of it, letting it fill your lungs, swimming in it – is foundational to God’s Kingdom. The truest expression of God’s character is His love. The gospel message is a message of love.

In 1 John 3:1 we read this, “See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!”

So right now, no matter how you feel, no matter what your past looks like, open your heart and accept God’s extravagant and lavish love! God loves you so much that He is sending you a dozen long stemmed red roses.

Dave Garrett

New Bern, North Carolina

9/29/2017

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