You have burdened me with your sins; you have wearied me with your iniquities. I, I am He who blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and I will not remember your sins. Isaiah 43:24-25
We all know what it feels like to want to be forgiven by someone. You’ve probably even had a time where you wanted to be forgiven so badly that you got angry at someone for their refusal to forgive you! It’s funny how quickly we forget this when we’re the ones who have been hurt. I’m sure we all have times where we are embarrassed about how angry we got about something or how we let a simple misunderstanding snowball into a bigger deal that it ever should have been.
But we also have relationships where extending forgiveness really takes work. Where the wrong that was done to us cut too deep, became too frequent, or was simply too painful. Where we aren’t even ready to want to forgive let alone extend forgiveness. When I think about those times in my life I feel convicted by, and grateful for, the words God speaks in today’s verses.
In Isaiah we read that God is pained by the fact that he’s given so much and the one thing he’s asked for in return, the love and trust of God’s people, they haven’t really even tried to do. God says, that this is a burden to him. In effect, the weight of the world’s sin, those things we do that pain God (and then sometimes blame God for), become God’s responsibility to forgive. God, who has done nothing wrong, is the one who has to do all the heavy lifting to repair the relationship. As one theologian puts it, in these verses “we sense the cross that God is already carrying.”
Recognizing then that God had taken it upon Godself to repair this relationship with us, may you go through today, forgiving as you have been forgiven and loving others as you are loved.