But Jesus was saying, “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34 NASB
“I said NO! Do not ask again.”
I turned back to the project I had been working on before I was so rudely interrupted and mumbled,
“Why is this so hard? When I say no the first time, I mean it.”
Sighing in frustration I looked up at my daughter walking away. Her head was bowed and, even from behind, I could see that she was broken, hurt, and unsure.
Leaning over my desk, the tears began to fall. Words came tumbling from my heart,
“Lord, forgive me. I wasn’t paying attention. I wasn’t thinking. I was reacting … and I was wrong.”
We do that, don’t we?
React … speak before we think.
I wonder how many times we’ve needed the same forgiveness the Roman soldiers and the mocking crowd at Golgotha needed … that forgiveness because we don’t know what we’re doing.
We’ve been rushing through life – even through our spiritual lives – and striving for all sorts of lofty goals and pursuing passionate dreams … but maybe we’ve missed what really matters.
Maybe it matters less to the heart of God if we tell our kids Bible stories and more if we live justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.
Maybe it matters less to the Lord if we write compelling status updates and more if we live compelling lives.
Maybe it matters less to our Savior if we memorize and meditate on His Words and more if we doers of what those Words mean.
Perhaps, this Tuesday before Easter, you – like me – need a sudden stop, a reality check. Because what does it matter if we gain the world but lose our souls?
We have a Savior who forgave those who didn’t grasp what they were doing, didn’t realize the depth of their need for Him. Today, I’m even more aware than ever how much I don’t know what I’m doing … How little I grasp my poverty outside of His grace and forgiveness.
That day, as my girl walked away from me, broken by the sharpness of my words, my tears fell on the pages of the book open in front of me … on these words:
“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.”
But in that moment, I did know, I realized what I had been doing … I went to the girl and apologized and listened to her latest story and watched her new dance.
Sometimes we don’t know, don’t understand, don’t realize. What a gift to have a praying Friend who teaches us and forgives us … and then shows us how to live a new way.