At sundown on th'day, (August 8th) the moon will re-appear over Israel thus marking the beginning of the 6th month of the Scriptural year, Elul. In rabbinic thought, Elul is an acronym for the Hebrew of "I am my Beloved's and my Beloved is mine." Elul starts the 40 days that lead up to Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement for Israel as a nation. These 40 days are marked by introspection and repentance. During this time, we connect with those we may have offended during the past year and ask forgiveness. We also freely forgive those who have taken a pin to our ego's balloon.
In the Disciples' Prayer (Matthew 6) we recite, "and forgive us our trespasses *AS* we forgive those who trespass against us." We, each and every one of us, must forgive in order to be forgiven. That is a tall order. Think about it: In our own sense of righteousness, we tend to hold on to those hurts and pains that we believe others have caused. The Truth is, every emotion is a choice. -- Love is a choice; anger is a choice. -- We need to be delivered from that Spirit of Offense because it is holding us back from us climbing higher and and having a deeper, more meaningful relationships with YHVH/Y'shua and family, friends, and humankind in general. Our unforgiveness (self-righteously holding onto our pain) blocks our spiritual growth. We get 'stuck' at that pain (be it real or imagined) and can go no farther in our growth as a Believer.
The first step in any healing process is to realize that there is a problem. From that point, we then have the ability to make choices. Without realizing that there is a problem, we are STUCK in place -- as if you are trying to run a race on this emotional or situational treadmill. And this spirit of offense can come between families, friends, lovers and spouses until one day, there is nothing left but resentment. Resentment is a poison that can fester in our spirits for years! That is not Y'shua's way! Even from the execution stake, He cried out, "Father, forgive them for they know not what they do!" He had to go through that Door - make that transition from life to death - unburdened by offense and resentment.
May it be our Father's will to deliver us from this spirit of offense and resentment and in doing so gather us more closely to Himself. Oh, Father, our spirit is indeed willing, but our flesh is so weak! We want to be everything You designed us to be, Father, yet we keep getting in the way of that glorious new creation that You desired and You designed. Help us, O Yah, to be the salt of the earth and the light to the nations You called us to be. Give us the strength to face this challenge with grace and dignity. Help us to divest ourselves of pride and the spirit of offense - and in love - forgive and be reconciled one to the other, b'shem Y'shua!