The Miracle of Forgiveness –  Encouragement for Today – March 20, 2024

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Charaia RushMarch 20, 2024

The Miracle of Forgiveness

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"Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,' you must forgive them." Luke 17:4 (NIV)

Growing up, I didn't spend much time with my grandmother - so I nervously stumbled over my words when asking her if my kids and I could stay with her while we moved back to Colorado.

I had believed my husband and I were in a season of reconciliation, only to discover it was all an illusion.

So when my grandmother offered me a matter-of-fact "yes," as if my question held a foregone conclusion, I let out a sigh of relief. That was just my grandmother. But what she lacked in warmth she possessed in wisdom.

While I wasn't at my grandmother's house for long, it was long enough to understand that I was living in the legacy of her faith. She could be heard humming hymns as she scooted around the kitchen in her wheelchair.

It didn't come as a shock to me, then, when her only advice to me in the middle of my sea of suffering was to forgive the father of my children. "It's the only way to be free," she said, with her eyes glued to her crossword puzzle.

My grandma never brought it up again. There was no need because what she said was what she meant. Forgiveness was simple - it was that simple.

I struggled with how she called me to the same resolve. To me, forgiveness felt anything but simple.

In Luke 17, Jesus taught His disciples about forgiveness, and He said the truth openly: The hurt is bound to happen. In this life, we will always experience something that needs to be forgiven. And to follow Jesus requires that we place our feet on the path of forgiveness again and again.

Jesus said, "Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,' you must forgive them" (Luke 17:4).

It's clear from this verse - and from many others where God speaks of forgiveness - that forgiving is not optional. To forgive is to obey what God has asked of us. Yet try as we may, we cannot manufacture the miracle of walking in forgiveness on our own.

The disciples' honest reaction when they heard Jesus' radical call to forgiveness was that they couldn't do it. They cried out, "Increase our faith!" (Luke 17:5, NIV). Jesus quickly assured them that all they needed was the smallest measure of faith imaginable, "faith as small as a mustard seed," for the miracle of forgiveness to take place in their hearts (Luke 17:6, NIV).

God gives us a hard command paired with tremendous grace. The type of grace that gives us the bravery not just to hear what Jesus said but to believe it's what He meant - and respond accordingly.

Lord, keep our hearts soft, even in our suffering. Give us faith the size of a mustard seed so we can extend forgiveness to others, just as You have forgiven us. In Jesus' Name, Amen.


To find courage to keep a soft heart in a tough world, instructions on staying awake to hope, and transformation that can only come from God, read Charaia's new book, Courageously Soft. You can purchase it here and read the first chapter here.


Connect with Charaia at and on Instagram @CharaiaRush.

Enter to WIN your very own copy of Courageously Soft by Charaia Rush. To celebrate this book, Charaia's publisher will give away 5 copies! Enter to win by leaving a comment here. {We'll randomly select 5 winners and then notify each one in the comments section by Monday, March 25, 2024.}


Luke 17:6, "He replied, ‘If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, "Be uprooted and planted in the sea," and it will obey you'" (NIV).

Can you think of a person you need to forgive? Write down your prayer over that situation today, and ask God to help you extend true forgiveness.

© 2024 by Charaia Rush. All rights reserved.

Proverbs 31 Ministries
P.O. Box 3189
Matthews, NC 28106