December 29

December 29, 2020
by: Terry Abe
As this Advent season has about drawn to a close, I wonder if I’ve really done an internal “straightening out,” as we celebrate the birth of our savior.  Straightening out my bookshelf is easy.  Having my heart in order and forgiving others the way God has forgiven me is harder.  During the holiday season relationships are magnified, partly because we are around others more.  Grow in our relationships is tough to do if you haven’t forgiven someone. 
The Hawaiians have a really interesting term for forgiveness.  It is kala.  It means to ‘forgive,’ but also to ‘let go.’  An older and wiser Christian once pointed out to me that God doesn’t just forgive our sins, He doesn’t even remember them! (Hebrews 10:17)
If I can forgive others this way, I will be like a squeaky-clean bottle.  If I choose not to forgive, my feelings will start to harm me, the way a bottle of poison rots the bottle as bitterness eats at my soul. It puts into perspective how my daily decisions begin to impact my character and life. 

The peace candle of Advent is what has impacted me recently.  We would all like world peace. I believe we have to first forgive family members who have hurt us, and live in peace with them, before we ever have a chance of getting along with those of different cultures and backgrounds to find world peace, living the way our Prince of Peace, whose birth we celebrate, beckons us to live.

Heavenly Father,
Especially during this Advent season, help us get our hearts in order, forgive others, and live in peace with our families, so we have a chance at living in peace with around the six billion other people in the world, so our Prince of Peace, who never once even laughed in the Bible, might just form a smile.   Amen 

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