My soul finds rest in God, my hope comes from him. My salvation and my honor depend on God, he is my mighty rock, my refuge. Psalm 62:7-8
How I’ve prayed for you over the weekend. Many of you have written to tell me that you’re relieved to finally have a way to apply the act of forgiveness. You’re ready to disentangle yourself from your offender. You’re ready to rid yourself of the bitterness that has tied you to the vivid memories of whatever it was that they did to you. You’re ready to rid yourself of torment and know the peace that Jesus gives when we leave matters of injustice in His hands.
Allow me to give you some guidelines as you get ready to take this foot-washing journey. Your offender will take the chair and you will assume your position on the stool. Jesus will be ever with you, giving you what you need to move forward. He will always be your encourager to propel you upward on this steep path of obedience. As you prepare, here are some things to keep in mind ~
- Feel the hurt. Most likely, you haven’t been able to forgive because the pain scared you and, quite frankly, it felt unjust to forgive. With their face ever before you in prayer, you will re-live the critical moments. It will be emotional. You may be surprised at the depth of your feelings. You may wonder if you are strong enough to bear it. Jesus is with you and, if needed, He will bring other people to walk alongside you during these next weeks.
2. Wash their feet until you have quiet tears. The pain you will feel is necessary. What will come out will be what has been trapped inside. The emotional outpouring will be confusing and messy. Tears will express grief, anger, and many other things. Persevere. Over time, the nature of your tears will change. As you wrestle with God’s will, you will move to accept that His providence and sovereignty is over all things. Tears will quiet as you believe Him for redemption.
3. Wash their feet until you feel a release in your spirit. How will you know when you have finished? Listen closely to the small, spontaneous voice in your spirit. The Holy Spirit will lead you to a new threshold. You will breathe fresh air, feel the turn in the road, maybe even sense a ‘well done’ being spoken over you.
Everything has been leading up to today. Jesus stands with you on this threshold of freedom.
You have promised to lead the blind in a way they do not know. All of this is foreign for so many who are reading this. It was foreign to me, Lord. But You are faithful to unveil each next step with grace. Amen