In my last two posts I described a metaphor of how we all tend to become bitter and unforgiving by holding on to offenses we have experienced in our lives. The metaphor was that of a bus which is termed the “hate bus”. The “hate bus” is used to describe how we go through life and throw people on our hate bus when they hurt, abuse, offend, or sin against us in some form or manner. Read the previous two posts to get a clearer picture. Today I’d like to talk a little about the passengers on our hate bus. These passengers are on our bus by our volition and they all seem to have a few things in common with passengers on other’s buses as well.
First of all, they don't necessarily care if they are on our bus, they just don't care. We like to think we are exercising some kind of emotional control by hating our enemies and keeping them on our hate bus. But I would suggest to you that there are some people who hate being on your bus, but after a while they will go on and live their life whether they are on your bus or not. I suppose for some period of time, that fellow I ran into with my car will look at his wife and every time he would see her scar he would hate me. I hate the fact that occurred and I felt horrible for it. But six to twelve months later, quite frankly, I quit thinking about it. I moved on. These passengers on our buses don't care they are on our buses.
Secondly, they are neither being punished nor redeemed on our bus. Two things people need because of the way they sin against us: they need to be dealt with or they need to be redeemed. Neither one of those things are happening when you put someone on your hate bus. You’re not helping them and quite frankly you’re not changing them.
They may have even died since we put them on our bus. In a metaphorical sense, having a corpse on your bus does something to the aroma of your personality. It stinks and everybody notices it but you. You’ve grown accustomed to the smell and you don’t think it is odd. But it is odd, even absurd, to continue to hate a person who has died. It’s affecting your life, not theirs obviously. There’s not an easy way to say that.
You and I can ride on our own bus. The day that fellow asked me why I ran the red light and I said I was so sorry, he said “You sure are!” That day I threw myself on my own bus. If you think someone will run over you with their bus, they will especially run over you with their bus if they are not driving their bus. They are a passenger on their own bus. They will run right over you. Somewhere in our psyche we think it is somehow honorable or acceptable to not forgive ourselves. It is actually unhealthy and prideful.
Lastly, God doesn't fit on your bus. We would like to think that God fits on our bus, but the only God that fits on your bus, the only God that is small enough to fit in a seat on your bus, is some god that you have whittled down, sized up and made about six feet tall and will comfortably fit on your bus. But that is not The God. That is not Almighty God. That is not Jehovah. That is some other god, some false god, some counterfeit god, but is not the God of the Bible. He is way too big to fit on any seat of your bus. That is good news, and the reason it is good news, is because he is not mad at you for hating him. Because he is not on your bus anyway, he is too big for that. He can handle it.
Well, if God is not on your bus then where is He? I would suggest to you that God is somewhere down the road on the right at a bus stop. If you are in Europe I guess he would be on the left. This bus stop is called FORGIVENESS. Why is He there? He is waiting for you to tap the brakes, pull the bus over and to help you with what needs to take place on your bus. Next post, I’ll describe what forgiveness is and what it is not.
Have a great day. I welcome your comments. God bless, Matt.