#Gafartawa in Hausa means ‘Forgiveness’ – The one that has been ‘forgiven much loveth much; but the one has been forgiven little loveth little’ (Luke 7:47). It is not our ability to love and forgive that proves that we are christians; it is rather the revelation of who Christ is that allows us to love and forgive – Remain blessed in the Lord.
No matter how deep the whisper is of the serpent that one should engage in a deep anger and suicidal sorrow of being betrayed and stabbed in the back by a loved one; the bible on the other hand shows us that many a time in life; one’s grief is and must come from one’s own. Be warned; this is a message that will be disagreed with by many both inside and outside the pews.
In the scriptures; we see that Abel was killed by his brother Cain (Gen 4.8); Noah was shamefully exposed by one of his sons (Gen 9.22); Joseph was rounded up by his brothers and thrown into a pit (Gen 37.24); A mother laid on her son killing him in the middle of the night and then went and swapped her dead child with the living child of another mother in the same house (1 Kings 3.16-28), Samson was exposed and betrayed by his own wife Delilah and handed over to his enemies (Judges 16.18); Job described as a genuine and godly man is encouraged to incur God’s Wrath and ‘curse God lest he die’ by his own wife (Job 2.9); the ruthless Queen Athaliah wiped out and was killing her children, grandchildren and relatives to remain undisputed Queen of Judah (2 Kings 11.1) and more. Jesus wasn’t betrayed by a stranger but by one of his own disciples – His grief came from his own.
Thus says the LORD: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man and makes flesh his strength, whose heart turns away from the LORD. (Jeremiah 17.5)
Whether it is your own family, your own neighbours or neighbourhood, your own countrymen, your own colleagues, your own race or nationality – it is a given. If the bible is preached correctly; the scriptures will be hated by those who have idolised a belief that there is nobody in this life – except for family. According to the book of Isaiah 49.15; a woman CAN FORGET and neglect the child that her breasts fed at birth; according to Psalm 27.10; even if a MOTHER AND FATHER FORSAKE THEIR CHILD; there the Lord will be to lift the resentful and the repentful soul up; according to Luke 3.4; in order for God to be true – EVERYMAN MUST BE A LIAR; according to Matt 10.37; Christ in his own words states: He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me: and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD Than to trust in man. (Psalm 118.8)
We must get the gist. It is not that loving and caring and valuing family is sinful. In fact, the man that neglects and doesn’t provide or care for his immediate family is far worse and much worse than an unbeliever. But better is the man who understands from his or her early days in walking with the Lord that there is none that compares to God and the perfect sacrifice of the perfect person of Jesus Christ. It is to the Glory of God when man fails the redeemed; we become more broken and more emptied which then turns to more dependant and more grateful of Christ. Our grief must come from our own.
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in princes. (Psalm 118.9)
Once again – I say it unashamedly: OUR GRIEF MUST COME FROM OUR OWN. Even if it’s not from your own friends, your own family, your own wife, your own husband, your own children, your own colleagues, your own tribe, your own country – it will come from your own race – the human race. Not the race sinfully described by our hashtag movements and media that based off of skin colour and melanin count; but the race perfectly described by the scriptures – the carnal evil and hell deserving human race. The race that is united as it breathes the same breath that God bestows. The race that is united under the depravity of it’s human heart to envy fellow man and despise it’s maker. The race that picks and chooses what offends it. The race that because a sentence against an evil work is not executed speedily – it’s heart is fully set on continually doing evil (Eccles 8.11). That race is not only them – it’s you and me. Our grief will and must come from our own.
Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he? (Isaiah 2.22)
In Christ alone; one’s hope is found. Many a man claims to have unfailing love; but a faithful man who can find? This poetic law from Proverbs 20.6 is not be grasped by people to show how rare a man’s love is – it is a further emphatic declaration of how great His Love is – the Love of Christ. A man of many companions may come to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother (Prov 18.24) speaks not of a deep friend or a husband or wife – but of Christ.
Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man. (Psalm 108.2)
We must look beyond the hills always; and know that our help comes from the Lord! He really is the potter and we are really are the clay. We don’t thank loved ones for who God is; we thank God for who they are. And we continue thanking God that even if the very same loved ones let us down – that our situation will bring glory to Him and His Kingdom and His Name. I’ll never forget when a good brother of mine at university once told me: ‘It is because you made that person first priority that you had to be separated from them’ – wise words. Truth. Dear Christian; never exalt anyone within a million mile radius of The One who has been commanded to be your heart’s first love – Christ. He is far above and all men and women are far below.
Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation. (Psalm 146.3)
‘Satan ruins men by flattering them into a good opinion of their own safety, and so bringing them to mind nothing, and fear nothing; and then he robs them of their strength and honour, and leads them captive at his will. When we sleep our spiritual enemies do not’ (C. H. Spurgeon). Take warning by the fall of Samson, carefully to watch against all fleshly lusts; let us prepare our hearts daily in Christ and prepare to be united with Christ. He really is that Loving and that Holy and full of weight in rich Glory and Majesty – an eternity of eternal worship towards the Eternal and Triune King that sits on the Throne awaits the delightfully redeemed. How dare we not prepare our hearts for Him.
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