Forgiveness: How?

This is the final sermon in a series on Forgiveness. You can choose to read part 1 and part 2 if you missed them.

Scripture Reading: Colossians 3:12-17

We’ve spent the last few weeks looking at the importance and the power of forgiveness. We remember that forgiveness is not the same as forgetting. Forgiving is also not the same as trusting. We learned about the physical, emotional, and spiritual toll withholding forgiveness has on us. We also learned Jesus has forgiven us, before we even had chance to do anything wrong, so we must be willing to do the same. In fact, he even commands us to forgive.

All along I’ve been promising you that we would finally get to the ultimate point, which is to learn the steps for forgiveness. And he we are These steps are helpful, and we can’t skip over anything, or else we’ll still be trapped in the negativity of being unforgiving. Each step is a part of the process of receiving healing from God in our lives. Forgiveness is not just for the other person, it is for us and our own physical, emotional and spiritual health.

I’m going to jump right into them today, because there’s a number of them, so you may want to keep track. At the end, I’ll try and give you a memory tool which will hopefully help you remember all the steps. read more…

Forgiveness: Why bother?

Scripture: John 13:1-5

Have you ever had someone do something for you that took you completely by surprise? I remember a few years ago now, we stopped to eat at a restaurant, I think we were on our way back from going around the Cabot Trail, and there was someone there I knew. Not very well mind you. He was also a pastor and was eating dinner with his wife. I think we had only met very briefly once before. We acknowledged each other, talked briefly, and enjoyed our meals with our families.

As he got up to leave, he came over one more time, shook my hand, said good bye to my family, then paid our bill.

I was shocked, and thankful of course, that this man, essentially a stranger, paid for our dinner. He saw it as his way to support our family and my ministry. I suppose he remembered what it was like when he was just starting out with a young family. And now that he was approaching retirement, he was trying to give back. read more…

Remember

Scripture: Isaiah 2:2-5

November 11, 1918 marked the end of the Great War. 100 years has passed since the end of the “War to end all wars” was agreed upon.

Imagine, this was seen to be the last war we would ever need to fight. How’s that going for us today?

100 years later, and really, how many periods of peace have we truly seen? World War 2. The Korean War. The Vietnam War. The war in Iraq. The war in Afghanistan. Think about the Cold War, which wasn’t a battle, but a time of great tension. This is just to name a few. Seems like since World War 1, we’ve been practically in some state of war ever since!

This time of year, I think of my grandfather who passed away just a few years ago. I think of our own Sir Duncan McKeigan. The stories these men carry all through their lives, and the painful memories that come along with them. read more…

Forgiveness: Where to begin?

Scripture Reading: Luke 17:1-10

Did anything in that video stick out for you? Did it invoke anything in you? It’s pretty amazing that people who have been hurt by someone else is able to forgive. Have you ever been hurt by someone? Have you been able to forgive?

It’s a tough question. We’ve all been hurt in some way or another. It seems like it’s just part of life. Some hurts are more severe than others. But regardless of the severity, it still hurts.

Many of you know I’ve started a course so I might be supervisor for student ministers some day. So I was in Halifax for a week taking this rather intensive course. Over the week we had the opportunity to practice on each other. Which meant we had to be prepared for almost anything.

We were coached to try and focus on key things, like changes in energy, or key words, or even just trying to trust our instincts. We were being challenged to not be afraid to “go deep”, that is to investigate emotion and feelings of the person we are supervising; to not be afraid to ask the tough questions in the moment.

read more…

Cheerful Receiver

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:6-15

It’s kind of hard to believe that we’re already into October. The trees are starting to change colours. The air is definitely cooler now, we’ve been able to have that “taste” of fall in the air for a few weeks now.

One sure way to know it’s October is that there is pumpkin spice everything now. What seemingly started with coffee has moved onto cereals, cookies, ice cream, including Dairy Queen Blizzards! Is nothing sacred?

Personally, I’m a big fan of summer. But fall is not that far behind in terms of favourite seasons. It’s such a great time to go for drives right now. To head off around the Cabot Trail and take in a hike or two. It’s a beautiful time of year, that’s for sure.

Add onto that, some special times with family, maybe around the dinner table this weekend, with a nice big, juicy turkey to dig into with all the trimmings. We love a good turkey dinner in our house, but I’ll confess a bit that we do it mostly for the side dishes. Who doesn’t love a good stuffing? A few days of leftover hot turkey sandwiches are nice too. Personally, I can do without cranberry sauce though. read more…