Daily Devotional September 28, 2020

Two days ago, Shannon and I marked the one year anniversary of eating a Whole-Foods, Plant-Based Diet.  For a carnivore like me, this has been a real change but the results have been worth it.  I no longer have to deal with myopathy or medications. 

In fact, a few weeks ago, one of the docs in the church told me I was going to live a very long time.  I’m good with that.

Having seen such positive results, others are following Shannon’s lead in trying to keep their husband’s alive.  One of these is Susan.

Last Wednesday night, Susan’s husband, Steve, sent the following text:  “How do you keep chickpeas from rolling off your plate?”  I responded:  “Use your fingers.”

Then Steve said:  “I eat every bite of tofu in your honor.” 

I’m beginning to think Steve may be a little bitter about being forced to give up chicken fried steaks, cheese burgers, and nachos.  The good news is that Steve is a Christian and understands that bitterness, malice, and grudges have no place in the life of a follower of Jesus Christ.

This is exactly what Paul meant when he said to the church at Ephesus:  “Put aside all bitterness, losing your temper, anger, shouting, and slander, along with every other evil.  Be kind, compassionate, and forgiving to each other, in the same way God forgave you in Christ.”  (Ephesians 4:31-32)

While you may not have a friend to blame for your new diet free from meat, cheese, honey, sausage, sour dough bread, olive oil, marshmallows, and chocolate meringue pie; more than likely, there is someone who has impacted your life in an adverse way.  Forgive them.

We forgive for two reasons.  First, we forgive because it frees us from the harm caused by others.  It is a requisite act on the way to wholeness and peace.

Second, and even more importantly, we forgive because God told us to.  It is what is best for us.  God is never wrong.

So, even though you may want to hold onto your bitterness the way Steve does, don’t do it.  Give it up.  Let it go.  It will wear you out.  Only then can you truly live.

Prayer:  Dear Gracious Heavenly God, in those moments when I am tempted to withhold forgiveness; remind me of your forgiveness for my infinite number of sins.  Help me live a life that pleases you.  Help me forgive.  In Jesus’ name I pray.  Amen.

Now that I’ve had some time to think about it, even though Shannon loves me as much as Susan loves Steve, she had never made me eat tofu.  But even being forced to eat something as gross as tofu doesn’t mean Steve can hold a grudge.  He has to forgive.  So do you.

I pray your day is filled with joy and laughter.
Tom Robbins