This week I needed an exercise in pain to help me see where I had been prideful and help me to take steps to remedy the situation. What God asked me to do was read Matthew 18:21-35, changing all the pronouns in this passage of the Bible to my name. Ouch! Below, are the result:
The Parable of the Unmerciful Servant
21 Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”
22 Jesus answered, “I tell you, not seven times, but seventy-seven times.
23 “Therefore, the kingdom of heaven is like a king [God, if you will], who wanted to settle accounts with his servants. 24 As he began the settlement, Lori, who owed him ten thousand bags of gold was brought to God. 25 Since Lori was not able to pay, the master ordered that Lori and Bob and her sons, Rob and Matt, and all that Lori had be sold to repay the debt. [This included their home, their property, their cars, Bob’s motorcycle, his tractors, their computers, their cell phones, their savings accounts, their cash on hand, gifts they had bought or received, television sets, precious heirlooms, and even Mauser and Rosie, their animals. Everything was to be put on the auction block and sold to the highest bidder.]
26 “At this Lori fell on her knees before him. ‘Be patient with me,’ Lori begged, ‘and I will pay back everything.’ 27 The servant’s master took pity on Lori, canceled the debt and let Lori go. [Remember, she owed this guy 10K BAGS of GOLD. A sum she could never repay-ever!]
28 “But when Lori went out, Lori found one of her fellow servants who owed Lori a hundred silver coins. Lori grabbed her and began to choke her. ‘Pay back what you owe me!’ Lori demanded.
29 “Lori’s fellow servant fell to her knees and begged Lori, ‘Be patient with me, and I will pay it back.’
30 “But Lori refused. Instead, Lori went off and had the woman thrown into prison until she could pay the debt. 31 When the other servants saw what had happened, they were outraged and went and told their master everything that had happened.
32 “Then the master called Lori in. ‘You wicked servant,’ he said, ‘I canceled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. [Remember: 10,000 BAGS of GOLD]. 33 Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’ 34 In anger Lori’s master handed Lori over to the jailers to be tortured, until Lori should pay back all Lori owed.
35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother or sister from your heart.”
Is there someone you need to forgive? What else is there that is more important than you getting that job done TODAY??!