July 1: Free

Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
2 Corinthians 3:17

In Majorie Thompson’s book, Forgiveness, she describes the Sioux Indians as a tribe which practices reconciliation rather than punishment.

They forgive, and I mean not a little, but a whole lot.

When someone has been murdered, the murderer is welcomed into the victim’s family and each member of the family must present him with one of their prized possessions.

The gift you bring shall go to the murderer, for a token of our sincerity and our purpose.  Though he has hurt us, we shall make him…a relative in place of the one who is not here.  Was he your brother? Then this man shall be your brother…As for me, this was my nephew. Therefore, this slayer shall be my nephew.  And from now on he shall be one of us.  We shall regard him as though he were our dead kinsman returned to us.

 Pretty mind blowing, don’t you think?

Compare this with our “civilized” society that inspires an eye for an eye, punishment, revenge, and a misplaced sense of justice that causes more suffering.

All these things stem from anger. Anger can be an entrapment, a prison.

What if there was another way? What if we could find a way past the anger to freedom?

The Sioux Indians choose forgiveness, and in it they find freedom.

Healing.

Reconciliation.

Restoration.

There is no better place to be freed by God’s spirit, than in forgiveness.

What have you been holding on to in anger that you need to let go of?

How do you think letting go might change your life?

As you go about your day, keep your eyes open. What does “Free” look like to you?
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by Monique A. Markwell

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