Jane Eyre and the Management of Forgiveness

Jane Eyre is a beautiful story by Charlotte Bronte and on October 16, 1847, she published her lovely novel.  What makes it amazing?  Jane’s management of forgiveness is completely remarkable.  (If you don’t know the story of Jane Eyre, you can Wikipedia it like Michael Scott or you can watch the Netflix movie of the story…or you can download the actual book….)

Summoned by her aunt, Jane made her way to the home she once knew. This aunt was the woman who ABUSED her.  She SHUT HER OUT, STOLE FROM HER, AND SOLD HER OFF.  Full of darkness, abuse, and neglect,  her memories were refreshed as soon as she walked through the doors of the old house.  One of the maids led Jane upstairs,  into her aunt’s bed chambers, and ushered her to the bedside.  Pale and weak, her Aunt’s eyes were full of pain.  Then she spoke, “Jane.  Jane, I have done two very bad things.  I treated you horribly.  Then, I sent you away to that horrible home for girls and didn’t give you the inheritance that would have made you a very wealthy woman.  Here are the papers to your Uncle’s estate.  Do with me as you will.”

For real?   In this (re-told) scene of Jane Eyre, the main character gets to experience someone trying to make amends for the damage she caused in life.  Maybe Bronte felt the same way and wrote it into her story.  (What a great thought/hope/dream.)  We all crave a little justice which is why it’s my favorite part of the story.  Do you ever think about what would it be like if those who had “wronged” us confessed and made amends?

Jane’s response was FULL of grace and mercy.  She completely forgives her aunt and urges her (to no avail) to forgive herself.

But… that’s a story.  What will we do in real life? 

“Give hurt a short expiration date; treat forgiveness like it will last forever” Bob Goff

Tell Me How

Stop shunning people you don’t agree with.

If your brother or sister sins against you, rebuke them; and if they repent, forgive them. Even if they sin against you seven times in a day and seven times come back to you saying ‘I repent,’ you must forgive them.    Luke 17:4-5

Stop gossiping when you feel you have every right.

 For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. 15 But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.  Matthew 6:14-15

Make the first move of grace.  Christ is all up in this forgiveness bid-ness. 

But with you, there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve you. Psalm 130:4

Be gracious.  Always.  

Open their eyes and turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, so that they may receive forgiveness of sins and a place among those who are sanctified by faith in me.  Acts 26:18

Christ is the example of forgiveness.   He is worthy of our whole heart- not one preoccupied with past hurt.

This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.  Matthew 26:28

Remember that we can’t even forgive ALONE.

I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.  John 15:5

Love Does.

Jesus prays for us!!  He asks Father God this: “Bring them into complete unity to #1 let the world know that You sent me and  #2 You love them  #3 You love me.  John 17:23

 

Imagine me rapping this last statement.

Yo Yo// This is Charlotte Bronte//I gots a message for my bros and sis eh? //  you know forgiveness is muy importante//  go go and er donte // out

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