“the dance of forgiveness”

Somewhere in the “dancing” between this blog and sermon prep this week (a sermon focused on “the blessedness of being peacemakers”), came across the following from           L. Gregory Jones on “the dance of forgiveness.”  (His words are followed by a video I prepared as part of the morning message–a video confirming that, no matter what the offense… and no matter how “clumsy” we may be with our “two left feet,” forgiveness is a reality and promise for us as Easter people!)

One of the ways Christian theologians have described the relationship between Father, Son and Holy Spirit is as a dance in which three persons, always giving themselves to one another in perfect love, are at the same time three and one. The love of the Trinity spills over into their love for us, people who are created by God for communion. Because forgiveness is at the heart of the God whom we worship as Trinity, we are swept up into that movement of God’s love when, by the power of the Spirit through the redemptive work of Jesus Christ, we join the divine dance by being forgiven so we can also forgive. Nothing in this world is more beautiful than seeing broken people healed through God’s forgiveness, learned and lived in the body of Christ, as they are swept up into God’s dance.

But learning the dance of forgiveness is not easy. Our hearts, souls, minds and bodies are deeply formed by the habits of sin and evil. Despite our destiny for communion, we human beings do not typically give and receive freely with one another, and certainly not with any trusting expectation. Instead, we often attempt to secure our lives at the expense of others. In short, we are well practiced in the steps that lead to mutual destruction and death while we know precious little of the steps that make up the divine dance of forgiveness.

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