Colossians 3:13 (NLT) says, "Make allowance for each other's faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others."
I normally read the NIV version of the Bible, but often I compare versions just to glean a bit more understanding from the verses. Today the NLT translation of Colossians 3:13 touched, more like pierced my heart. I think it was the wording NLT uses at the beginning of the verse, "make allowances for each other's faults." The NIV version is "bear with each other," but for some reason "make allowances" hits home with me. To me "bear" means to put up with, grudgingly accept something. While "make allowances" means actively seeking to overlook or forgive a mistake. How often do I truly make allowances for another's faults?
We are to make allowances for each other's faults and forgive ANYONE who offends us! I need this verse posted everywhere I look. I am fairly tolerant with others as long as they are doing what I want them to do or how I want it done. But I have to admit I am not as tolerant when they don't do things how I think they should; surprise, surprise. My allowance level runs a little low when I don't agree with how things are done. Too often we are quick to point out others' (especially our families') faults, things they do that we think they shouldn't, while not thinking about our faults that they may be overlooking. We want allowances for our mistakes, yet we falter in making allowances for others. Again, pierced my heart!
We can be very good at hanging onto resentment and hurt feelings, not making allowances for people's mistakes, therefore not forgiving. We don't want to forgive or don't think we need to. Another area I need much work on.
Forgiving is not an easy process, especially when the other party doesn't ask for forgiveness or think they need it. I am still struggling with someone who hurt our family, but I realized when writing this that there are things I probably need forgiven for by them and have never asked for it. Seeking forgiveness by the offending party isn't a prerequisite to forgiving. God forgave us long before we ever sought that forgiveness and we are commanded to do the same with others. We don't need to and shouldn't wait until someone asks for forgiveness to forgive. We need to start the process of forgiveness as soon as we are hurt because it can be a long process at times.
None of us are perfect, we all make mistakes. We want others to make allowances for our mistakes so we need to do the same for them. We need to get past the hurt, the resentment, the need to be vindicated, and start the forgiving process. Letting go, making allowances, forgiving frees us in more ways than we can even imagine.
Who do you need to make allowance for? Who do you need to work on forgiving? Let's work on it together with the help of Christ. It isn't a simple process, but one worth doing. While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. May Colossians 3:13 be a part of our life everyday!
--JODI HENDRICKS IS A LONG-TIME MEMBER OF FARMINGTON UNITED METHODIST CHURCH. SHE TEACHES ADULT AND YOUTH BIBLE CLASSES. THE OPINIONS EXPRESSED ARE THOSE OF THE AUTHOR.Religion on 11/20/2019
Print Headline: Making Allowances For Each Other, Even As Christ Forgave Us