by: Rev. Justin Krupsky, Associate Pastor of Family Life
A few years back during a sermon series here at Trinity called “40 Days of Love” we unpacked 1 Corinthians 13. We had an opportunity to consider that love keeps no records of wrongs. As we unpacked this truth a saying was delivered to us, “Don’t repeat it, delete it.” In Family Life Ministry, actually in all ministry, the forgiveness of sins is the main thing. Forgiveness is hard though. Really hard. Since that sermon I have been trying to apply this teaching into all the areas of my life, but it seems that I still need a lot of work.
Here’s what I know when people hurt me I seem to have three tendencies; remember it, retaliate, or walk away. However this is not how Jesus taught us to do life. He taught us to delete it. What I have found helpful is to identify the ways that I repeat it instead of deleting it.
I have found that I repeat it emotionally in my mind, relationally to the one who wronged me, and verbally in telling others. Interesting enough God’s word has something to say about each of these ways we repeat it, instead of deleting it.
Philippians 4:8 says, “Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, if anything is praise worthy or excellent think about these things.” God’s word also tells us to take our thoughts captive and to renew our mind with His truth. This verse is a tool that God has given us to help delete it. My challenge to myself and to you is that when you start thinking about the hurt, think about things that God has told us to think about it.
Proverbs 17:9 says, “Love forgets mistakes, but nagging about them parts the best of friends.” A husband in my office a few years ago said, “Whenever I hurt my wife’s feelings she gets historical. She tells me everything I ever did wrong.” Another thought on this truth is this, “I forgive you but I am not ever going to forget this.” Really? Maybe this is why God in 1 Corinthians, “Love doesn’t keep a record of wrong.” Don’t repeat, delete it.
Proverbs 16:28 says, “Gossip is spread by wicked people. They stir up trouble and they break up friendships.” Let me say this, it is good to talk to people for godly wise counsel that will encourage you to work it out with the person that hurt you, but when you don’t talk to the person that offended you or have an intent to this is called gossip. Certainly at first glance it feels good to talk to someone else about the hurt you have experienced but I think we all know deep down inside it just doesn’t feel good talking about it. It actually makes us feel worse.
Don’t repeat, delete it. Sounds easy? It’s not. My prayer for you and for me is that God’s Spirit will continue to teach us how to forgive.
I am here if you need some Pastoral Counsel on this teaching; firstname.lastname@example.org