“May you hear the humble and earnest requests from me and your people Israel when we pray toward this place. Yes, hear us from heaven where you live, and when you hear, forgive.”
1 Kings 8:30
Solomon repeated one request multiple times in his Prayer of Dedication for the Temple, “Hear from heaven and forgive.” Each repetition was prefaced with a particular need: if one person wronged another, if Israel was defeated because of their sin, or if they were sent into exile because of their sin. Each request was about relationship, either between individuals, or between God and His people. Solomon requested the only miracle that could restore broken relationships—forgiveness.
The biggest need in any relationship is forgiveness, and it is also the biggest gift anyone can give. Of course, God Himself never needs forgiveness, but all the rest of us sin and fall short in every relationship we enter. So, without forgiveness, all relationships would be doomed!
Solomon reminded God why he was making such requests for Israel, “…because they are your people—your own special possession.” Relationship is important to God; therefore, He offers forgiveness. And for that same reason forgiveness is vital in any relationship—because PEOPLE are special.
So, when a disagreement threatens to bring division in my marriage or in any relationship, I often ask myself: “Is my anger worth the hole it’s carving in our relationship?” It doesn’t take me long to decide my answer, because that person is more special than my opinion or my rights!
Give the gift that saves relationships with special people—forgiveness!