Bad things shouldn’t happen to good people. We all know that. Yet even a brief glance into the Scriptures shows us how often terrible events cloud the lives of those who are closest to the Lord. Joseph, Moses and Jesus himself spring immediately to mind.
When intruders broke into the home of Pastor Davey Blackburn and his wife, Amanda, things turned ugly in a hurry.
Twelve weeks pregnant with their second child, Amanda was shot in the head and, despite the best efforts of the medics, she died later in hospital.
Three men are in custody, charged with Amanda’s murder, but that provides little comfort to her grieving husband.
In fact, the supreme test facing Davey is one that is experienced by every believer every day in one form or another – how can he forgive the men who murdered his wife?
As Davey says, “I wasn’t ever going to feel like forgiving Amanda’s killers. I realised that forgiveness is a decision. And it’s not just a one-time decision.
“Every day I have to decide to forgive. And here’s why… bitterness and unforgiveness is going to be a cancer to no one else except me. And it’s going to eat me up inside if I hang on to that.”
Well-loved Bible teacher RT Kendall may surprise you in his brilliant article this month. Condensing 25 years of ministry in Westminster Chapel, he Points to a single 15 minutes as the most important part of it all.
Upset by someone who had deeply hurt him, RT could not bring himself to forgive until a close friend rammed the point home: “Until you totally forgive them, you will be in chains. Release them and you will be released.”
If this is the message you needed to hear, what is there to stop you putting matters right?