Today as I sat down in church I felt so thankful for the music that we were to be singing.
I stand all amazed.
I had been discussing with Jay the need I had to let things go. To not harbor resentment and pain. I did not want to keep feeding it.
As we sang, I was struck with the 3rd verse 2nd line.
Such mercy, such love and devotion, can I forget?
How often I look to other sources for help.. when Christ is right there. I felt grateful for the nudge of where to turn for peace. (another favorite song...I could go on and on of the blessings that song has brought to me at times.)
So after the gentle reminder as I attended my other meetings, I was struck with grief. The overwhelming chocking, I can't breathe kind. The kind where you need to leave the room. It hurt, I was frustrated that I was feeling this. The source of the grief is not relevant, just that I felt it.
After church I was sorting through some of my Grandfathers books that I had received. I was taking the dust jackets off and kind of thumbing through them all. I picked up one called
"To Him That Believeth"- and started flipping through the pages and came to a chapter with a book mark. And it had lots of markings from study.
The title of this chapter?
"Dissolving Resentments and Achieving Forgiveness"
I showed this to Jay and he said how interesting to think that Grandaddy may have struggled with the same feelings, and that he had studied this.
How timely for me. How sweet of a blessing from the Lord.
There was an example in this chapter about rattlesnakes. And how they can die from their own venom.
"... I heard of an experiment that was conducted ... one of the caretakers took one of his large rattlesnakes and put a forked stick behind its head so it could not coil to strike. Then he began to tantalize it with small chicks ... The snake kept trying to coil unsuccessfully, and venom dripped quite freely from its fangs. Within minutes the snake stiffened and died.
... Rattlesnakes can stand just about anything except its own venom. When it cannot discharge the venom as fast as it is produced, it dies of its own accumulated poison."
"When you have any resentment, hurt, bitterness, or hatred in your heart, regardless of the cause, if you do not get rid of it at once through the spirit of forgiveness, the hatred will continue to fester and grow and increase.......unless contained, these negative feelings will finally consume and destroy the person who harbors them."
This is exactly what I was talking to Jay about this morning....the need to let stuff go.
And where do you turn?
He suffered in Gethsemane, He atoned for us all. Those that hurt, those that were the cause of pain for others. I was talking to a dear friend and she said "the atonement is for everyone."
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13