This normally sweet fluffy Pomeranian bares his teeth to warn off any advance. Baring teeth is a clear indication that attack is imminent. Teeth have long been a symbol of aggression. That must be the idea behind the old expression, “fighting tooth and nail.” In French, “to have a tooth against someone” is their way of expressing the idea of holding a grudge.
Today’s verse teaches that it is to one’s glory to overlook an offense rather than hold a grudge. To overlook an offense takes patience and it is a sign of one’s wisdom. But to overlook something hurtful does not mean having no memory of it. Sometimes, the memory stays. But rather than it being at the forefront of our minds, we let it go and show grace. It is a gracious behavior and one that is to our glory. Holding a grudge makes us small and petty. There is no glory in that!
I am so grateful for the people in my life that have overlooked my offenses. They have been many, some intentional and some not. When I realize the grace extended to me, than I can more easily extend that same grace to others. And the supreme model of total and complete forgiveness is the Lord who does not treat me as my sins deserve (Psalm 103:10). I am forever grateful that Christ does not hold a grudge or where would I be? Even so, I do have trouble letting go and it is inglorious! I need the help of His Spirit to truly forgive from the heart.
Lord, make me wise enough to show patience and not hold grudges!