In the movie Bruce Almighty, the main character, played by Jim Carrey, actually becomes God. There are some pretty funny parts, and some sobering ones too. In one scene Carrey starts hearing all the prayers of everyone on earth. He tries several ways of dealing with it and fails. He then sets up a system of answering the prayers online. It goes okay at first, but by the time he finishes answering the first few million prayers, there millions of new ones.
A few years ago I posted on twitter and Facebook for people to tell me what the hardest thing was from them to forgive. Within a short amount of time I was getting messages and responses. Dozens. And they were heartbreaking.
People wrote things like, “I was violated.” “I was abused.” “I was molested.” “I was betrayed.” “I was abandoned.” “I was cheated.” “I was heartbroken.” I tried to write everyone back with some kind of encouraging words, but it was almost overwhelming.
I began to think of how God’s heart must break as he sees and hears all these kinds of things that have happened to people. However, unlike Bruce Almighty and me, God is never overwhelmed.
God is amazing in that he forgives, heals and restores the fractures, offenses, wounds, hurts, and brokenness in our lives. No matter how severe, he can handle it! It’s this aspect of God’s power and character, his unlimited supply of grace and mercy that makes us love him and want to worship him.
He expects the same from us
“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” (Ephesians 4:32)
The way God has forgiven us of the wrongful and hurtful things we’ve done to others, he expects us to do likewise to those who have wronged us. This may seem impossible and even unfair; but it’s the only way we can truly be healed and released from the hurt. The same grace that flows from God to us will flow through us to heal what others.
Forgiveness is the operating system of Christianity. We forgive because we have been forgiven.