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Monday, May 23, 2011

Cup Choice

Forgive.  It's an action word.  And, it's a choice.

I did an object lesson yesterday with a group of children. 

They were each given two paper cups.  And, I held a huge bag of popcorn --representing all sorts of grievances from other people.  When the popcorn was thrown at them, it was now in their court.  They didn't ask for the popcorn to land in their territory, but there it was regardless.  What were they going to do with it?

They had a choice.

They either took those offenses and held onto them -- putting them in the cup that represented their own heart.  Or, they tossed the wrong-doings into the cup that represented God -- choosing not to hold a grudge, but casting all their cares (including the mistreatment of others) into God's capable Hands. 

Then we went on to imagine if this popcorn were rocks.  Even huge boulders.  What a weight, what a burden on us if we chose to put the rocks in our own cup.  The only one that would suffer would be us.  But, what a freedom if we put those boulders in God's cup. 

The obvious answer was, of course, throwing it in the 'God cup'.  Letting it go and giving it to Him.

But, this can be easier said than done in the real world.  Someone slashes you with a verbal sword.  Someone mistreats you over and over.  Someone betrays you.  Someone lies.  Someone breaks their promises.

What do you with it?? 

We have a cup choice.
This is where our relationship with God comes in.  The more we know His Character and His Justice, the more we know that He is our True Defender.  We trust that He sees all, knows all, and is able to bring Justice to every situation -- like a Daddy defending his child. 

We cast it all on Him because we know how much He cares for us.  He's able to carry the heavy load and begin the healing process in our own hearts, making us whole.  And, He doesn't stop there.  He heals us, helps us forgive, but will also give us eyes to see the people that hurt us through His loving perspective.  To our amazement, what was intended to harm us (even destroy us), becomes the very tool that God uses to change us and give us a heart of compassion for others that says, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they do."

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