Teach me the love and forgiveness
Teach me the love and forgiveness
Pastor Shaiju Thomas Njarackal
We can spend most of our lives on trivial issues. But Jesus Christ reminds us what really matters and what we really need. Our greatest felt needs are to be loved, forgiven, whole and alive. Do you feel compelled to somehow respond to Jesus’ death on the cross? Do you feel compelled to enter deeper into the experience of Christ’s forgiveness?. That feeling is not an accident. It is a divine appointment. Love. It’s what we all want. To be loved is the most amazing thing that can happen to you. But sometimes everything goes wrong — love hurts us and we’re left holding bruised hearts in our hands. Where do we go from here?. Wanting to be loved is part of what it means to be human. We’re all looking for love, but not just any love – unconditional love, pure love. Do you wonder if anyone can love you as you truly are?. Why is pure love so hard to find? Maybe it’s because we keep looking in all the wrong places. Where can you go to feel completely accepted? Where can you look to find unconditional love? There is only one place where love never disappoints. The picture of pure love is found in God. God love. But how can you God loves you? How can you see it? Through Jesus Christ, we see love at its purest. Jesus said, (John 15:13). The picture of pure, passionate love is caught in the frame of Jesus loving you while hanging on the cross. God made His love visible in Christ. And Jesus showed that love is measured not merely by feelings, but by sacrifice. How can you know pure love? Imagine asking Jesus, “How much do you love me?” He would stretch out His arms, with His nail-pierced hands, and say, “This much.”
What Is love
Love is an emotion of strong affection and personal attachment. In philosophical context, love is a virtue representing all of human kindness,compassion, and affection. Love is central to many religions, as in the Christian phrase, "God is love" or Agape in the Canonical gospels. Love may also be described as actions towards others (or oneself) based on compassion, or as actions towards others based on affection. In English, love refers to a variety of different feelings, states, and attitudes, ranging from pleasure ("I loved that meal") to interpersonal attraction ("I love my partner"). "Love" may refer specifically to the passionate desire and intimacy of romantic love, to the sexual love of eros, to the emotional closeness of familial love, or the platonic love that defines friendship, to the profound oneness or devotion of religious love. This diversity of uses and meanings, combined with the complexity of the feelings involved, makes love unusually difficult to consistently define, even compared to other emotional states.Love in its various forms acts as a major facilitator of interpersonal relationships and, owing to its central psychological importance, is one of the most common themes in the creative arts. Love may be understood as part of the survival instinct, a function keep human beings together against menaces and to facilitate the continuation of the species.
The Deffenission of Love
The word "love" can have a variety of related but distinct meanings in different contexts. Often, other languages use multiple words to express some of the different concepts that English relies mainly on "love" to encapsulate; one example is the plurality of Greek words for "love." Cultural differences in conceptualizing love thus make it doubly difficult to establish any universal definition. Although the nature or essence of love is a subject of frequent debate, different aspects of the word can be clarified by determining what isn't love. As a general expression of positive sentiment (a stronger form of like), love is commonly contrasted with hate (or neutral apathy); as a less sexual and more emotionally intimate form of romantic attachment, love is commonly contrasted with lust; and as an interpersonal relationship with romantic overtones, love is sometimes contrasted with friendship, although the word love is often applied to close friendships.
The Christian understanding is that love comes from God. The love of man and woman—eros in Greek—and the unselfish love of others (agape), are often contrasted as "ascending" and "descending" love, respectively, but are ultimately the same thing.
There are several Greek words for "love" that are regularly referred to in Christian circles.
§ Agape: In the New Testament, agapē is charitable, selfless, altruistic, and unconditional. It is parental love, seen as creating goodness in the world; it is the way God is seen to love humanity, and it is seen as the kind of love that Christians aspire to have for one another.
§ Phileo: Also used in the New Testament, phileo is a human response to something that is found to be delightful. Also known as "brotherly love."
§ Two other words for love in the Greek language, eros (sexual love) and storge (child-to-parent love), were never used in the New Testament.
Christians believe that to Love God with all your heart, mind, and strength and Love your neighbor as yourself are the two most important things in life (the greatest commandment of the Jewish Torah, according to Jesus; cf. Gospel of Mark chapter 12, verses 28–34). Saint Augustine summarized this when he wrote "Love God, and do as thou wilt."
The Apostle Paul glorified love as the most important virtue of all. Describing love in the famous poem in 1 Corinthians, he wrote, "Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, and always perseveres." (1 Cor. 13:4–7, NIV)
The Apostle John wrote, "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him." (John 3:16–17, NIV) John also wrote, "Dear friends, let us love one another for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love." (1 John 4:7–8, NIV)
Saint Augustine says that one must be able to decipher the difference between love and lust. Lust, according to Saint Augustine, is an overindulgence, but to love and be loved is what he has sought for his entire life. He even says, “I was in love with love.” Finally, he does fall in love and is loved back, by God. Saint Augustine says the only one who can love you truly and fully is God, because love with a human only allows for flaws such as“jealousy, suspicion, fear, anger, and contention.” According to Saint Augustine, to love God is “to attain the peace which is yours.” (Saint Augustine's Confessions)
Christian theologians see God as the source of love, which is mirrored in humans and their own loving relationships. Influential Christian theologian C.S. Lewis wrote a book called The Four Loves. Benedict XVI wrote his first encyclical on "God is love". He said that a human being, created in the image of God, who is love, is able to practice love; to give himself to God and others (agape) and by receiving and experiencing God's love in contemplation (eros). This life of love, according to him, is the life of the saints such as Teresa of Calcutta and the Blessed Virgin Mary and is the direction Christians take when they believe that God loves them.
In Christianity the practical definition of love is best summarised by St. Thomas Aquinas, who defined love as "to will the good of another," or to desire for another to succeed. This is the explanation of the Christian need to love others, including their enemies. As Thomas Aquinas explains, Christian love is motivated by the need to see others succeed in life, to be good people.
Forgiveness is typically defined as the process of concluding resentment, indignation or anger as a result of a perceived offense, difference or mistake, or ceasing to demand punishment or restitution. The Oxford English Dictionary defines forgiveness as 'to grant free pardon and to give up all claim on account of an offense or debt'. The concept and benefits of forgiveness have been explored in religious thought, the social sciences and medicine. Forgiveness may be considered simply in terms of the person who forgives including forgiving themselves, in terms of the person forgiven or in terms of the relationship between the forgiver and the person forgiven. In some contexts, forgiveness may be granted without any expectation of restorative justice, and without any response on the part of the offender (for example, one may forgive a person who is incommunicado or dead). In practical terms, it may be necessary for the offender to offer some form of acknowledgment, apology or restitution, or even just ask for forgiveness, in order for the wronged person to believe himself able to forgive
Most world religions include teachings on the nature of forgiveness, and many of these teachings provide an underlying basis for many varying modern day traditions and practices of forgiveness. Some religious doctrines or philosophies place greater emphasis on the need for humans to find some sort of divine forgiveness for their own shortcomings, others place greater emphasis on the need for humans to practice forgiveness of one another, yet others make little or no distinction between human and divine forgiveness.
In the New Testament, Jesus speaks of the importance of Christians forgiving or showing mercy towards others. The Parable of the Prodigal Son is perhaps the best known instance of such teaching and practice of forgiveness.
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus repeatedly spoke of forgiveness, “Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy.” Matthew 5:7 (NIV) “Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to your brother; then come and offer your gift.” Matthew 5:23-24 (NIV) “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.” Mark 11:25 (NIV) “But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also.” Luke 6:27-29 (NIV) “Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.” Luke 6:36 (NIV) “Do not judge, and you will not be judged. Do not condemn, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.” Luke 6:37 (NIV)
Elsewhere, it is said, "Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven. Matthew 18:21-22 (NKJV)
Jesus asked for God's forgiveness of those who crucified him. "And Jesus said, 'Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.'" Luke 23: 34 (ESV)
Forgive and forget” is how the old saying goes. But is it that simple?In learning how to forgive, we first have to arrive at a place where our personal peace and happiness is more important to us than the desire to be right and make someone else wrong. Even though arriving at that point can take longer in some situations than others, eventually the discomfort of holding someone out of our heart just becomes too painful. In doing that we actually hold a part of ourselves away from our own love and there is nothing more painful than that.
Before we can learn how to forgive others, we generally have to do some self-healing first. The first step is to acknowledge where we are in pain.We can't heal something until we admit to ourselves that it is here and take responsibility for our own feelings. Then we must bring loving compassion, acceptance and forgiveness to ourselves. We can't give to others something we don't have for ourselves. Once we've brought love and healing to ourselves, then we are ready to bring compassion, love and forgiveness to others.
We can't rush this step of learning how to forgive. Until we have truly completed the previous steps of loving ourselves, we can only accomplish a superficial forgiveness of the other players in the circumstances involving our wounds. And superficial forgiveness isn't really forgiveness at all. It won't get you where you want to go in your healing.
Another reason why it is important to do our own personal forgiveness work first before learning how to forgive others is that it helps us to see our own underlying wounds and how they cause us to act in an "off balance" way toward others. This makes it much easier to see that other's actions are motivated by THEIR wounds, and that their actions toward us have nothing to do with us.
Learning how to forgive is really about taking responsibility for our life in a far deeper and broader way than most of us have ever even considered. Total responsibility means that everything in our life is our responsibility. Everything. This means every person that comes into our life experience as well as their actions, everything we see or hear or experience, is here because they are a reflection of something within us.
By the Law of Attraction, nothing could be in our life unless we resonated with it in some way. It couldn’t be in our life unless it was a vibrational match to something inside us, whether we are conscious of it or not. What we dominantly put our attention on manifests in our life. The kind of thoughts that we think create reflections of that same vibration all around us. So, in a sense, we create them. Each of us creates the world that we live in.
This means that when we see a politician or even a terrorist and we don’t like what we see, what we are actually seeing is a part of our self and it is being shown to us to give us an opportunity to heal it. These “others” don't exist, in a manner of speaking, except as projections from inside us. The problem isn't with them because there is no “them” that is separate from us. In order to change “them” we have to change our self. This is learning how to forgive.
Yes, this seems hard to grasp at first because it is so different from how we are conditioned to believe. It is an ongoing process to fully accept and actually live from this perspective. Basically, it comes down to loving yourself as the You that is everything you see and experience. As you love everything you experience, your world begins to change, because your outer world is a projection of your inner world. In order to improve your own life, you have to heal your life – and your life is you and everything in your life. As we learn how to forgive, our life automatically shifts into a more loving realm..Let us Pray to God that God please teach us That which I see not, teach thou me – And Let us viewed the friendship