Taking pause from the ABC's, I must spend a moment to respond to what the Lord is teaching me on the gift of reconciliation... There is no feeling like the punched-in-the-stomach pangs of knowing someone is angry with you. Equally as painful is being angry yourself while having an unresolved conflict with someone you care about. Both are concomitant with broken fellowship. More than once I have been tempted to hedge myself in and never risk, confront, share, or love that I might not have to ever experience the sickening sensation of conflict again. Hedges may keep others out, but it also keeps you in. Yet: "Something there is that doesn't love a wall, that wants it down." (Robert Frost, Mending Wall) That is where reconciliation comes in. I suppose I should say that reconciliation enters when pride slips out the back door. You can't really make it right with someone and still hold on to hubristic vanity. If humility and prioritization of relationship over selfishness is the prerequisite to restoration, forgiveness is the syllabus. (Colossians 3:13)  God is so good to not leave us to our own devices in the hard work of reconciliation; He is our very template.

In humility and lowliness, Christ became for us the reconciliation between us, sinful man, and God. God demonstrated His love for us and for His own glory, by offering His son as our only means of forgiveness. Christ is our example. Christ initiated the restoration, became the reconciliation, and offered the forgiveness. In Him is our hope for peace with God. In Him is our hope for peace with a brother or sister. Have you thanked God today for His costly gift of reconciliation? Have you thanked Him for that gift, that frees you to forgive another? I have.

From now on, then, we do not know anyone in a purely human way. Even if we have known Christ in a purely human way, yet now we no longer know Him like that. Therefore if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation; old things have passed away, and look, new things have come. Now everything is from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation: that is, in Christ, God reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed the message of reconciliation to us. Therefor, we are ambassadors for Christ; certain that God is appealing through us, we plead on Christ's behalf, "Be reconciled to God." He made the One who did not know sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

2 Corinthians 5:16-21

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