"The pride of your heart has deceived you, You who dwell in the clefts of the rock, Whose habitation is high; You who say in your heart, 'Who will bring me down to the ground?'" NKJV
In the book of Obadiah, the prophet is proclaiming judgment on the nation of Edom. This nation and God's people of Israel have a history full of conflict starting at the birth of Jacob and Esau. Jacob's deception began hundreds of years of violence as Israel and Edom locked horns in an extended bout of sibling rivalry. If Edom had forgiven Israel and turned to the Lord, they would have found freedom rather than bondage to their bitterness.
While you may not be fighting with another nation, maybe you are harboring resentment towards a friend or family member who wronged you. Now, like Esau, you desire revenge and will stop at nothing to get it. Holding a grudge may make us feel empowered, but it does nothing but rob us of joy. When we step outside ourselves and forgive others as God has forgiven us, we find freedom from our cage of contempt. Forgiveness of others also opens the floodgates of God's forgiveness in our own lives so that we may find rest for our souls and the perfect joy of the Lord.
Life Lesson: We need to practice active forgiveness.
Thank You for forgiving me of my sins. Help me to forgive others as You have forgiven me. If I am holding any grudges or bitterness, show me so that I can practice active forgiveness. In Jesus' name, Amen.