When you forgive someone, you slice away the wrong from the person who did it. You disengage that person from his hurtful act. You recreate him. –Lewis Smedes as quoted in Philip Yancey’s “What’s So Amazing About Grace.”
Restoration without forgiveness is not restoration. It’s a great act.
Restoration without understanding God’s great personal love and grace will lose its steam.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. Now all things are of God, who has reconciled us to Himself through Jesus Christ, and has given us the ministry of reconciliation, that is, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not imputing their trespasses to them, and has committed to us the word of reconciliation.
– Paul, an apostle of Christ
Many say the world is going down.
But I also believe it is going up…it is being renewed before our eyes, and I don’t want to miss it.
Now the law came in to increase the trespass, but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more
With every immersion into Christ, the Heavens rejoice.
Not only are humans being restored to God daily, I believe that planet earth is being restored where Kingdom subjects walk by faith. One day this earth will be gone, but as we take part in the present world’s restoration, we are living in the shadow of the New Heavens and Earth and attracting more to Christ.
Restoration not only needs its brother of forgiveness, but its sister of grace.
Restoration is measurable. It makes leaps in the lives of its recipient that otherwise would keep them bound to the curse of sin and death.
In the book “Switch On Your Brain” Carlone Leaf – a professing Christ-following scientist – concludes that her personal studies in neuroscience points to the fact that the brain was wired for love.
Current instrumentation is actually able to measure new pathways that are created in the brain when in an environment of positivity.
What is more positive than living with the knowledge and connection to Christ, Creator, Redeemer, Savior of mankind?
It not only changes one personally, it changes family trees, communities and countries.
While sin brings humans down, there is a stream of Grace flowing that will ultimately win.
Restoration happens when I forgive as I have been forgiven.
Restoration continues its great work as I offer grace to others that God is giving me daily.
But if I don’t forgive, my actual brain begins to wire bitterness back into my soul. If I refuse grace, my heart becomes hard.
I don’t want that.
Further conclusions affirm what God has taught all along; the heart is the seat of the mind and ultimately the physical brain, and not the other way around.
If I keep my heart pure, it will renew my mind and can rewire my physical brain.
I believe restoration is the reason I can encounter someone who’s suffered great trauma and who seem unaffected by it. They’ve forgiven as Christ has called and chosen to be people of Christ’s peace, offering grace in their speech and actions to those all around.
It is good to have these among us, and to imitate their positive state and faith in God.
This state allows one to go from fault-finder to faith-finder; from world’s critic to servant of others; from self-righteous to becoming the righteousness of God.
It is an eternal spring-time in the heart!
When I obey by faith and keep my heart pure and renew my mind according to the Lord’s direction, he rewards me not only with a pure unseen heart, but a scientifically measurable new physical brain with new circuits ready to do my new day’s work.
I want to obey Christ, to forgive and be in my ongoing state of restoration, offering forgiveness and grace to others as Christ asks me to.