THE LAW OF RESTITUTION – RECONCILIATION
“You can never do too much for Him who has done so much for us.” -The late Coach T.
One of my best friends, Coach Joe Tremarello, I met in my first year as a basketball coach at the University of Alaska Fairbanks in 1965. Joe T was about the finest man I’ve ever known in my life.
From the moment it became clear giving my life to the Lord came with the promise; “If any man be in Christ he is a new creation. Old things passed away, all things become new.”
Paul tells all believers we are called to the ministry of reconciliation; we are the Lord’s ambassadors to the world.
For 27 years, Joe T was on my prayer list. At an NBC camp at Chugiak High School, Alaska Hall of Fame Coach T told 300 plus young men he had become an ambassador for the Lord during the middle of the night as he listened to the young coaches sing and pray as they lay on sleeping bags in the wrestling room before sleep. (This was the only large room in the school with soft mats and no all-night summer Alaskan sun).
Sudden brain cancer robbed Joe T of his ambassadorship here on earth. Heaven means more to me now because The KING (Joe T’s nickname) is waiting for me with open arms and a huge Italian smile.
The role of an ambassador is to be an excellent representative. An ambassadorship is a high privilege. It is not to be taken for granted. It is a gift.
What you need to know and remember about forgiveness and restitution:
Forgiveness is not an option; it is a law to be obeyed. Forgiveness is not about the other person, it is about you. Forgiveness is your get out of jail free card.
Restitution is optional. It is not a command. The law of restitution is conditional. These are the conditions making restitution-reconciliation possible:
- The person must be safe. Not be a dangerous threat to your personal safety.
- The person must be willing to forgive and be forgiven. It must be mutual.
- The person must take responsibility for their offenses so far as possible to do their part to repair the offense.
- The person must be willing to do the hard work over an extended period of time to prove they wish to be reconciled.
Thankfully the Lord does not demand us to reconcile; he only asks us to live at peace with all men so far as it is possible.
Some relationships have been so grievously damaged, restoration is not wise or even possible. In these cases we forgive and pray for their well-being.
With gratitude and praise, the Lord has called us to be his ambassadors, ministers of reconciliation and restoration, so far as is possible with ALL PEOPLE not just the nice ones.