DAY 12 - RECONCILIATION: GOD’S GIFT OF FRIENDSHIP AND PEACE
Forgiveness. Reconciliation. They are related, but they are not the same. We can have forgiveness without reconciliation, but we cannot have reconciliation without forgiveness. Human to human, both parties have to forgive and want the relationship to be restored. If either one isn’t willing to forgive, reconciliation cannot take place. It goes both ways.
With God it is very different. He has not sinned against us in any way, so we have no need to forgive Him. However, we have sinned against Him, and we need His forgiveness. He is the great Reconciler; only He can reconcile us to Himself. It’s a one-way street. He forgives; He reconciles. The only thing we bring to the table is faith.
Reconciliation with God takes place when our relationship, characterized by separation and brokenness is restored through His work and our faith. The moment we sin against God, reconciliation becomes necessary. The Father sent His Son to us, and through the blood of the cross, Jesus made reconciliation possible by establishing peace between God and man. He presents us blameless before the Father. All the barriers have been removed, and an intimate relationship with Jesus is available to all who believe. The message of the Gospel is the message of reconciliation. We can rejoice because that which was broken has now been restored!
Our position with God the Father is fixed, meaning it will not change, on earth and for all eternity. Jesus died once to provide for all who believe the gifts of salvation, redemption, justification, reconciliation, and sanctification. Through these gifts, He gave us free access to Himself, all day every day! In this we can find great joy! Jesus made a way for us to be more than our spiritual gifts. He made us His friends!
Many of us may have some regrets over decisions or choices we made over the past two years. Maybe we moved away from all that Jesus accomplished on the cross. There is a way back. Pray, confess, repent, be humble, ask for help and believe that Jesus’ position toward us truly is fixed. He truly is our Reconciler/Friend. We can begin again every moment, if necessary, based on His forever work on the cross.
As a family, talk about what it means to each one to be at peace with God. Since the peace on His part is already established, what things can hinder it on ours? Talk about the importance of being reconciled to others so we can enter into the peace that God provides (Matthew 5:23,24). Discuss what it might look like to each one for God to be our friend and for us to be His.
PRAYER & REFLECTION
- Through prayer, rejoice and thank Jesus for the work that was accomplished on the cross so we could be at peace with God and others.
- Ask the Holy Spirit to reveal anything in you that might be hindering the perfect work of Jesus in your life. Repent where necessary, and thank Jesus for His unending forgiveness.
- Reflect on what it means to be God’s friend.