June 2024 Devotional: Forgiveness

By Major Gaylene Yardley
Divisional Women’s Ministries Secretary
Southwest Division

Note: This devotional coordinates with this month’s craft, Soap Carving, and this month’s Bible Study.

Can you say that you have not sinned today? Listen to this prayer.

Dear Lord,
So far I’ve done all right.
I haven’t gossiped,
haven’t lost my temper,
haven’t been greedy, grumpy, nasty, selfish, or overindulgent.
I’m really glad about that.

But in a few minutes, God,
I’m going to get out of bed.
And from then on,
I’m going to need a lot more help.

I feel this way many times. I’m doing great God and then…My dinner burns, I drop the milk on the floor, someone almost hit me at the left turn, my boss told me I am getting extra work for my plate, my kids played hide and seek in the clean laundry, and on and on.

When things like this happen, I get mad, I say things in my head that I can’t say out loud, I resent people for their actions that I have no power over. Life happens and we must realize that we do sin daily in our actions or in our thoughts.

1 John 1:8 tells us, “If we say we have not sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.” The passage goes on to say (v. 9), “if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” The soap we will use in our craft is a great reminder of this verse. We can be cleansed from our sins only through Jesus Christ, but we have to confess those sins to Him. Sometimes it is hard to admit our wrongs, our mistakes, our actions that we have done. I don’t like to admit when I am wrong. I want it just to all go away, but it doesn’t until I confess it to the Lord. Then it is all gone. What a great promise to us that he is faithful in forgiveness. I pray that you are grateful that Jesus loves you enough to wash your sins away and to do it anytime and anyplace you come to Him with your sins. It can be while you are working, vacuuming, eating dinner, going to bed, Jesus meets you where you are.

Maybe someone has been unkind to you. Maybe you have been hurt by someone close to you. Maybe you feel you can’t forgive them. C. S. Lewis said this, “Everyone says forgiveness is a lovely idea until they have something to forgive.” It’s a great concept until it’s you who must forgive someone you do not feel deserves it. In Matthew 18:21 and 22 we read some very difficult information. “Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times must I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times”? Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.” NIV

So, do you deserve forgiveness? Perhaps you might think a bit differently after reading this verse. None of us deserve the forgiveness we have in Christ Jesus, but it is a gift from Him for the sins of the world that He took upon Himself. Jesus extended this forgiveness to you, so why don’t you extend it to another person who has wronged you? Remember Ephesians 4:32 NLT says, “Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, just as God through Christ Jesus has forgiven you. “

The plan for our lives as followers of Jesus is to ask for forgiveness and to extend that to others as well.

May our prayer be:

Thank you Lord for helping me through the day and forgiving me for my sins and for helping me to forgive those who wronged or hurt me today. I am glad to receive your forgiveness and to extend it to others. Amen