Finding Freedom on the Inside

Weekly Devotional

REJOICING OR NOT?

  

Proverbs 24:17

Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,

and let not your heart be glad when he stumbles

This proverb came to mind the other night when I came across a local news station. They were interviewing the daughter of a murder victim and her response to learn that the perpetrator had died in prison. She stated that she cried out in joy and did a happy dance. Then she said this was probably not a Christian reaction but that the murderer didn’t deserve to be cried over.

This hit me on many levels. I was sad to think that this woman had lived all these years as a professed Christian, but didn’t have forgiveness. Or that she could take upon herself to judge the value of her neighbor. This unfortunately is the state of affairs in the world; but it shouldn’t be in the Church.

My nephew was murdered a few years ago, so I know the pain of losing someone in this manner. It was hard but by GOD’s grace I was able to forgive the individual and increase my faith in HIM. The harder step was helping my sister through the process of forgiving by turning to GOD. Over time and through GOD she came to forgive the man who killed her son. To this day, he is still not repentant over his actions, but we continue to pray for him to come to Christ.

Matthew 6:14-15

For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will the Father forgive your trespasses.

Heavenly Father, our hearts are truly deceitful and sinful. Please search our hearts and remove all that is against your will. Change our hearts fully from a heart of sin to one composed of your love. Change our minds from thoughts of selfishness into thoughts of love for others. Help us to learn to forgive as you will. Help us to continually turn our faces to you for guidance and turn away from our own sinful ways. Let us not condemn our enemies or those that do us wrong; but so pray for them. To pray that their hearts are softened, and they come to know you. Amen.

            -L.