Two words commonly used among God’s people are forgiveness and repentance. We receive forgiveness for our sins and are called to forgive others who sin against us. We are called to repentance – the genuine sorry for our sins and the turning away from our sins to embrace the Christ life.
Yet in my pastoral work, it seems to me that these are two practices that people often acknowledge are most difficult. I hear “I can never forgive him for that… “ I struggle with the secret sin (of pornography, uncontrolled shopping, anger, etc) and keep turning to the sin and not away from it. Clearly we struggle.
Recently I came across a video that would be helpful for elders as they seek to learn about this area of Christian ministry. I encourage you to use it in elders training sometime. Dale S. Ryan is at the Fuller institute for Recovery Ministry. This is the link to Making Amends (and Making Forgiveness).
If we wish to be a community of reconciliation training ourselves it its practices is a vital part of our ministry.