Day Eight: Sacrifice

Day Eight: Sacrifice

30 days of forgiveness

The pain I’ve endured over a prolonged period of time is so great that any ability to forgive those who sinned against me would have to be considered a sacrifice. What loss am I suffering? Losses that would have been restored had I pursued legal action.

I decided long ago to not pursue formal recovery of what was lost, i.e., financial security, a home, standing within the family, my reputation, etc. I would lose even more had I pursued legal recourse. Actually, I plan to file police reports in at least five different cities. However, the statute of limitations has run out so it’s really about simply reporting the truth.

What I have learned is my mother is incapable of sacrificing anything for the betterment of someone besides herself. My father sacrificed plenty when he opted to care for his mother who suffered from Alzheimer’s for the last 25 years of her life. He knows sacrifice and release. She died about three years ago.

My mother sacrificed very little for me but I sacrificed plenty for my own children. Perhaps I need to get some perspective on sacrifice.

Jesus sacrificed plenty … for love
Jesus never sinned and, unlike Mary Poppins, was perfect in every way. Jesus healed the multitudes so much so that if all of his miracles had been documented the Bible would be thousands of pages. Jesus was the Son of God and man. Jesus raised people from the dead. Jesus was justified in his anger when he chased out the vendors from the Temple Courts.

Yet Jesus was mocked by the religious high council and church elders. He was despised most when he skillfully answered seemingly impossible to answer questions causing conflict and controversy.

images-3For example, when asked if Jews should pay taxes they never expected him to say they need to not only pay taxes but pay tithes. When they asked him what to do with a woman caught in bed with a married man, they fully expected him to say, “Stone her!” He didn’t. Rather, he wrote something in the sand that scared off those who aimed to hurl stones until she died.

Rather than praise and worship Him for his deity, wisdom, authority and power, they publicly humiliated, tortured and sentenced him to death at the hands of Romans via Pontius Pilate. Jesus was prepared to sacrifice himself so that we could live with him in Heaven forever. That was pure love.

What can I sacrifice?
I’m not Jesus. However, I can offer eternal life by living a righteous life. I can lay down my claims for repayment for the sake of reconciliation. I can do my part to make salvation so attractive that she would be desperate to have what I have.

If I keep my lips clean, maybe, just maybe I may live to see my mother baptism of water and the fire of the Holy Spirit. Then I would have the blessed assurance of knowing that I’ll see her again in Heaven along with my husband and her mother.

Points to Ponder
What are you willing to sacrifice so that someone who hurt you deeply may know Jesus?

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