Down in the Dungeon

There’s a comic strip in the newspaper called “Rose is Rose.” It features a stay-at-home mom, Rose, who has a tattooed, leather-clad biker-babe alter ego. She has a hard-working, love-note writing husband, Jimbo, and a sweet, school-loving boy named Pasquale.

They are a typical family in many ways, but the illustrator of the strip brings out a very important spiritual truth: Every once in awhile, the strip will feature Rose at the bottom of a deep pit, a shackle around her ankle and a deep, disturbing frown upon her face. It’s usually not clear what has happened to plunge her into that dungeon of her own making, but her family is usually waiting at the top, trying to coax her out. But Rose alone holds the key.

Our dungeons, like Rose’s, are of our own making. Whether we’re simply offended by something unintentional, or truly sinned against, forgiveness is ours to give. It’s always our choice. So is being a blessing to those who have offended us.

“When you forgive,” says Joyce Meyer, “it opens a door for God to heal you, but honestly, it doesn’t do much for the person who offended you. But when you bless them, you ask God to bring truth to them so they can repent and experience the real freedom He provides. Forgiveness” she says “sets you free…blessing your enemies sets them free.”

Romans 12:14 says, “Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.”

Likewise, when we repent of something we have done to offend someone else, when they extend forgiveness to us, and bless us by word or deed, then we are set free from the guilt that might plague us, if we are sensitive to the Holy Spirit. Granted, some people offend us and have no idea they’ve done it, but our forgiveness and, as stated before, our blessing, can serve as a way to clue them in to something that may need to change in their heart. But their repentance is not our job; our extending forgiveness and blessing is.

That self-made dungeon is cold and damp. The air is so much nicer on the outside.

Thankful today for:

279. clouds

280. flowering bushes

281. remote controls

282. tough love

283. community

284. movies

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