S (Scripture): Luke 17:4 Even if someone sins against you seven times in one day and returns to you seven times and says, ‘I am changing my ways,’ you must forgive that person.”
5 The apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!”
6 The Lord replied, “If you had faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.
7 “Would any of you say to your servant, who had just come in from the field after plowing or tending sheep, ‘Come! Sit down for dinner’? 8 Wouldn’t you say instead, ‘Fix my dinner. Put on the clothes of a table servant and wait on me while I eat and drink. After that, you can eat and drink’? 9 You won’t thank the servant because the servant did what you asked, will you? 10 In the same way, when you have done everything required of you, you should say, ‘We servants deserve no special praise. We have only done our duty.’”
O (Observation): We need more faith, Jesus! We need more faith to keep up with this requirement to be ready to forgive at the drop of a hat! Doesn’t that take extra faith, Jesus?
Apparently not! Apparently the work of forgiveness takes just a mustard seed’s worth of faith.
After all…the duty of a disciple of Jesus is to be ready to welcome anyone who wishes to be forgiven.
A (Application): I guess we see faith in two ways: logical, orderly, systematic, and straightforward; or, loose, organic, emotionally-driven, and contradictory. We tend to fall into one category or another, and think the other group is overly critical or not critical enough.
So what is the deal? What way are we to learn? What can the more organized folks learn from the more organic side, in terms of forgiveness? And what can the more organic folks of faith learn from those who are more on the organized side?
No one side has cornered the market on forgiveness. And so in the meantime, perhaps we can all learn to appreciate the other, while still being true to ourselves.
But the understanding is that each side has faith and each side is to be quick to forgive.
P (Prayer): Lord, help me to forgive when asked and to appreciate those who think differently from me. Amen.