A man’s wisdom gives him patience; it is to his glory to overlook an offense.
Overlook an offense? That can be hard to do – especially if you have a strong sense of justice, of right and wrong, of fairness and equity. When we overlook an offense the offender gets off easy, they don’t have to “pay” for their offense, rather the offended one takes the brunt, absorbs the loss, pain or hurt.
But Scripture makes it clear that believers are to be people of forgiveness. “Judgment without mercy will be shown to anyone who has not been merciful. Mercy triumphs over judgment!” (James 2:13)
A little girl was being berated unjustly by an adult. He was wagging his big finger in her face, falsely accusing her and telling her what a bad child she was. After his tirade, she looked at him and gently said, “You must be having a bad day.”
Wow! When I heard that story, I thought, “I hope someday I can be as mature as that little girl.” She didn’t let the injustice infect her. Rather than turning inward or becoming defensive or going on the attack, this young lady saw the need of the other person. Even while being abused she could consider others, their needs, their hurts, their pain. How so perfectly like Jesus. “Father forgive them” – not because they have asked for it or earned it or even deserve it. In the midst of His pain He reached out to others.
It is to our glory to overlook an offense because it makes us look so much like our Heavenly Father. Some day I want to be like that little girl, like my Lord. Today is the day I can start.
Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them.
Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.