“Whoever covers an offense seeks love, but he who repeats a matter separates close friends.”Proverbs 17:9
No one likes to be reminded of their mistakes. An insensitive word. A foolish act that costs both money and credibility. The time we let anger control us.
Let’s face it — we all sin.
So, we experience great joy when we understand that God forgives our evil thoughts and actions. The psalmist writes, “For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his steadfast love toward those who fear him; as far as the east is from the west, so far does he remove our transgressions from us” (Psalm 103:11-12).
Unfortunately, while we like to have our wrong deeds erased, as humans, we tend to hold on to the hurt that others cause us. Sometimes, we like the attention. So, we nurse a wound, repeat the story, and gain support from others about the poor treatment we received. Other times, we like the power we gain when we hold a past mistake over someone else’s head.
Each day provides plentiful opportunities to take offense. A friend ignores you, a stranger rudely takes advantage of you, a family member speaks unkindly to you. But, we can choose how we respond.
Covering an offense costs us. Seeking love, more than being right, requires humility and grace. Releasing the offender requires forgiveness. Yet, the reward outweighs the cost. We discover that freedom comes when we “let it go.”
God shows us the way. God loved us when we were, to others, unlovable, so that we could love others in turn. He forgave us, and gives us the power to forgive.
Heavenly Father, thank you for the sound advice this proverb gives me. Help me not to be touchy or super-sensitive. Help me to see beyond the offense to the person. I want to value relationships more than being right. Show me how to let it go. Amen.
Thought — If you have allowed some offense to fester in your heart, confess it to God. Ask Him to show you how to move forward.

By Suzanne Benner