Since we have all spent so much time studying the digestive process of cows, let me give a quick recap before we get started. A cow has four stomachs. When a cow first eats, it swallows the food whole and it is stored within the first and second stomachs. When the cow becomes hungry again, it coughs up the stored food, chews and re swallows. The chewed food then moves into the third and fourth stomachs where it awaits the rest of the digestive process. For those that are unaware of cow terminology, a heifer is a young female cow that has not born a calf and the regurgitated food that the cow chews up is called cud. Now that we are all on the same page in livestock trivia, the portion of this digestive process that we will be discussing today is the chewing of the cud. The cud, for our purposes, will represent all of the things that we have forgiven but are maybe having a hard time letting go of.
When God forgives us, the Bible tells us that He remembers our sin no more (Hebrews 8:12). Alas, we are not God, try as some may, and we have a little bit harder of a time with the concept of forgiving and forgetting. Our human nature leaves us more willing to hang onto things and the enemy will grab ahold of anything and everything to bring us down and keep us from the life that God has intended for us. Now we as Christians know that we are called to forgive those who have wronged us. Luke chapter seventeen verse four tells us that even if someone wrongs us seven times a day and each time turns and asks forgiveness, we must forgive them. Forgiveness is a pretty basic principle for us. We forgive others as Christ forgave us. But often times, even if we have forgiven, we have a difficult time moving on. We never trust the person again, even if they show signs of change. We encounter a similar situation and immediately expect the same results. We meet a person who possesses the same characteristics, whether physical features or personal traits, and we pre judge the person and assume that they will wrong us as well. Some experiences can be huge and traumatic and, while we can truly forgive people in our hearts, we come out of the experience changed; we become fearful, doubtful, skeptical, bitter; we build bigger walls around us and let fewer people in. Now, please do not hear me say that we should not learn from experiences or be careful in trusting people. We do want to be mature in our walk with God and in our discernment, not immature like a heifer. What we cannot allow the enemy to do is to take places of pain and hurt in our lives and keep bringing them back to the forefront of our minds for us to chew on all over again. When we make the choice to chew on our cud, we could be allowing the enemy to keep us from something amazing that God has for us. For one, we are allowing him to keep us in a place of hurt. When we stay in a place of hurt and offense we remain in a victim mentality and God has created us to be overcomers in the name of Jesus Christ. If the enemy can get us to chew on our cud he can keep us from growing in wisdom and knowledge and becoming stronger in our faith. If he can get us to chew on our cud he can get us to avoid situations and circumstances (and people) that God is wanting to use to bless us and grow us or, even bigger still, situations and circumstances that God wants to use US to touch someone else and make an impact on their life for His glory. If the enemy can get us to chew on our cud we remain in a place of bitterness, pain, shame, and resentment and that is not of the Lord. For God tells us to chew on whatever is noble, right, pure and lovely (Philippians 4:8). So let's not be heifers, amen? Let us not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good (Romans 12:21). Join Amanda and Kristy this week as they discuss the topic of chewing on cud and trying their best to not be heifers. You can listen to this week's podcast on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Stitcher, or on the send help web page at www.thesendhelppodcast.com