I learnt a big lesson about forgiveness from Tertia (not her real name):
Three years ago, I met some people. I am so grateful that with grace from Above, I could guide them to make a choice for Jesus. A close and loving relationship developed between us. They became like my own children.
Inexplicably, the woman turned against me. I received the most reprehensible SMSs from her. She also told me about all the lies she and another woman had told my pastor.
They wanted to destroy my ministry. I struggled with this for a long time. The betrayal left deep scars. But with grace form Above, I was eventually able to absolve and forgive them. I just prayed for them.
Last year, both women came to me separately to ask for forgiveness.
Then, the one woman’s husband fell very ill. He was on the edge of death. He was taken to ICU. The doctors prepared her for the worst.
One evening, someone knocked on my door. It was that man’s wife. She fell into my arms and cried from fear and need. At one stage they had stopped going to church, and therefore there was no pastor or minister to support them.
I have been helping them and supporting them spiritually for the past three months.
The man has now returned to work.
When we reconciled, people asked me why I took her back after all that she had done to me. But the Holy Spirit ensured me it was the right thing to do. Today, I can see God’s involvement in it.
That is what forgiveness is. That is real forgiveness. It’s not easy. No, it’s very hard. So hard that Tertia definitely would not have been able to do it on her own. One can only do it with the assistance of the Holy Spirit.
Tertia understood this exactly: 15And be careful that when you get on each other’s nerves you don’t snap at each other. Look for the best in each other, and always do your best to bring it out.
And at the back of my mind I wonder what would have happened to that woman and her husband if Tertia had not walked the hard road of forgiveness? Who would’ve helped them?
Forgiveness is always the right thing to do. Even if it is so very hard.
Who do you have to forgive?
When do you have to do it?
Have you asked the Holy Spirit to do it?
Lord, I struggle to forgive. I cannot do it on my own. May your Holy Spirit please help to do it. Amen.