I just spent the last hour and a half composing a letter I have put off for three months. In Matthew 18 Jesus commands us to confront our brother who sins against us (fellow believer) in increasing levels of intervention. The stated reward in the passage is to regain our brother.
(Interestingly enough, nowhere in the New Testament is the modern American “love you, piss off” sort of forgiveness encountered. Paul separated from Barnabas when they were unable to agree, and there is every evidence that they parted in Christ, though there is no indication I can recall of an actual sin committed against one another.)
I find it difficult to confront someone who has sinned against me, if I mean to do it well. I can lash out with the best of them, but to deliberately, calmly seek to delineate sin and call to repentance is another beast entirely.
Moreover, I had to do this to someone who has stated that the best way to love him is to avoid him, so I must obey Christ without the hope of the prize in Christ’s commandments. I cannot and have no expectation of regaining my brother here on this world.
But Jesus is Lord. The proudest day of my life was my first oath as a man, the oath of allegiance to my feudal overlord, the King of all Creation, the Prince of Peace. It is mine to obey, and to trust that though my own sinfulness is such that no obedience can overwhelm or surpass it, I have already received my reward in Christ and his death on the cross.
But man I really feel like I just went 5 rounds with Mike Tyson.
Nunc Dimittis, my Lord. Nunc dimittis indeed.