Therefore, be imitators of God as his dearly loved children. And walk in love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself for us, as a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
Dear Heavenly Father,
You want us to demonstrate your love to others. One of the most incredible acts of love you did for us was to forgive your enemies and give them life. Lord, I was one of those who hated you, and my sinful nature caused this separation from you. Christ, the Lamb of God, your Son, came to this world demonstrating his love for us, his enemies. He came because of the world’s and my sin. He died to remove the sins that separated us from you. Love is not only taking care of those who are close to you and see things as you do, but love is reaching out to those who have caused you pain and trouble. Lord, that was me. I was a sinful pain and still am. Father, thank you for loving me so much that you set aside everything that should separate me from you. Actually, you placed it on the cross with your Son. I know that I did not deserve to be loved by you, so give me the strength to set aside any differences I have with others and carry my cross. Forgiveness is the greatest act of love we can give to others, just as Christ gave himself for us all. What a sweet and fragrant sacrifice this is. When we pardon the sins of those around us because we put all our sins of pride, jealousy, envy, and hateful anger on the cross. What a fragrant sacrifice to you, like burning these sins upon an altar. With our sins removed, we have a right spirit in our hearts to love all those around us. I cannot control what others say or do, but I can forgive them with your strength. Lord, thank you for forgiving me out of love. Amen.
Pastor Roger Emmons
To imitate Christ’s love for you means looking at who you were before he forgave you. What if Jesus had said, “I don’t know if I can forgive them!” Where would we be?