[To anyone out there who doesn't think God is a relational God with a personal interest in you, I respectfully ask you to reconsider. To the rest of you, may these words bring you hope.]
Earlier today I received an email so unexpected that I still feel amazed. Its message is one I'd been hoping to hear for many years and frankly, had come to assume I never would. Without elaborating on its contents or back story, I'd like to encourage you with this: two weeks ago I listened to my pastor give a sermon on forgiveness and restoring broken relationships. At the end of the sermon, he asked us to pray about the relationships in our life that needed restoration. One person immediately came to my mind, someone I had not spoken with in several years. As a result of this person's inability to forgive me many years ago, I'd reached a place where deep down, I could not forgive him (hypocritical of me, indeed). And so, on that day I asked God to enable me to extend grace and really forgive this person. It felt good to admit my own part in the brokenness and to let go of years of confusion + hurt + anger. And I resolved to be content and to stop expecting an apology.
Thus, my astonishment today in receiving from this very person an email apologizing for his actions. We have not been in contact for a very, very long time; therefore, given the chronology of these last couple weeks, it certainly seems the email's timing was divinely inspired.
Is there a relationship in your life that needs to be restored? Be encouraged and do not give up hope. Remember that the Lord is our Great Physician, and with Him all things are possible.