Everyday Encounter with God

Pastor Sylvia's Encounters with God in the Midst of Everyday Life


Declaring a Jubilee

Now that 2017 has ended, I have some personal business to complete. I am declaring a personal “Jubilee.”

The Book of Leviticus teaches that every seven years property was to be returned to its rightful owner. Relationships were to be restored, and debts cancelled. No crops were planted that year; the ground was allowed to rest. During a Jubilee year God’s people were instructed to right their wrongs.

As 2018 begins, I am not focused on the numerology of the Jewish and Gregorian calendars. My interest is in cleaning up the situations that prevent me from fully experiencing my relationship with God. It’s impossible to walk forward with confidence when we are constantly looking behind us with guilt and regret. Thus, it’s time for a Jubilee.

I have some declarations to make. 

Let’s begin with people who financially or morally “owe me” something. I am forgiving the debt. From here forward you owe me nothing. Unpaid debts can strangle the love out of a relationship, so as of now I declare the debt to me paid in full. If at some time in the future you are compelled to pay me back, don’t. Pay it forward to someone who needs to be encouraged and blessed.

Likewise, if you feel that I owe you something, please tell me. I want to take care of my part. Making things right with you is important.

Second, if you treated me badly in the past, I declare that pain null and void. I forgive you. No conditions. No expectations for the future.

God brings specific people into our lives for preordained reasons that we don’t always see. Sometimes friendships stretch for a lifetime. Sometimes they don’t. There are times when God wills us to work through our conflicts. He can also instruct us to walk away.

Forgiving you doesn’t mean that I will automatically work to restore my relationship with you. What it does mean is that I release my right to get even, be morally compensated, or feel self-righteous. I choose to let go of any resentments I am holding. It’s over. I am grateful for everything you have taught me, and from now on I will be praying only goodness and mercy into your life.

To those I have harmed, I humbly ask for your forgiveness. It is now clear to me that at the time I did not see His imprint on your life. I failed miserably when you most needed to be loved. I squandered what God intended me to receive from you.

If it is time for you to walk away from me, I understand and wish you showers of blessings. I pray that your pain will pass.

If it would be of benefit for us to talk about what happened and for you to hear my apology aloud, please let me know. It’s the least I can do. Your spiritual restoration is more important than my desire to appear right. And let’s face it; sometimes I am flat out wrong.

Because I am declaring a personal jubilee, I have also made a deep moral inventory and confessed my sins to the One who hung on the cross to nullify them. Some were acts of commission; others were things I should have done and didn’t. Collectively they have made it difficult for me to hear the voice of the Holy Spirit and respond in a timely fashion. At the end of each day, His is the only voice that really matters.

In conclusion, I am choosing to step into 2018 with a clean slate. Anyone interested in joining me?