"Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you, leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift" (Matthew 5:23-24, NIV).
A seminary professor had a habit of starting each new semester in the same way. He would pass out a bag to each of his students. At the front of the room, he had a large bin filled with hundreds of baseballs.
He would invite all his students to come to the front of the classroom. Then he would hand out markers. He instructed each student to write every wrong they’d ever suffered.
When they finished writing, they would put the baseball into their bag. When they were done, the professor looked at the class. “Now, I want you to carry these bags everywhere you go until our next class. You take it everywhere, from your dorm to the cafeteria to your job. Keep it with you always.”
A week later, many of his students arrived with their bags. The professor pointed to a young man in the first row. “Tell us about your week…how do you feel?”
The young man sighed, “Tired. Lugging that thing around was exhausting. My neck ached from it.”
The professor nodded. “That heavy bag represents unforgiveness. Every time you hold on to a wrong, you add weight to your bag, and it’s a weight that God didn’t intend for you to carry.”
God, help me put down the load I’ve been carrying. I don’t want to hold on to unforgiveness. Show me how to release this burden so I can walk in freedom and healing. In Jesus’ name, Amen.