The Keeper of me/ Forgiveness

There was an amazing Dutch woman named Corrie Ten Boom. She and her family were held prisoner in a German concentration camp where all of her family perished but her. She and her sister Betsy were extremely close and she saw her sister beaten by a guard prior to her death. Corrie was also a Christian and prayed daily that she would be an example of Jesus and his love. A few years after the war she became in her own words a “tramp for the Lord” circling the globe and preaching of Gods goodness. One night she had finished speaking about forgiveness for her captures when the guard who beat Betsy approached her after the talk. In her words she said “everything in her froze.” He came to her and said ” I am so glad GOD forgives me!” and held out his hand for her to take. She said that she looked into his eyes and all she could see was his cruelty to Betsy. Her hand would not come out. “Lord she prayed help me!” She later described what happened. “It was as if my hand would not move and I can see him smiling at me with the good news of his forgiveness and I am frozen in pain. When I cried to GOD to help me I felt my hand begin to move and when I took his hand in mine GOD’s amazing love came through me to him and I saw him through new eyes. The love of GOD just overwhelmed us both and I was at peace and so was he. The pain never came back. It was forgiven
Charis means grace. It is my hearts cry to have it define me as it defined Corrie. To travel long in pain with another and not hold it against them. To not build a wall of defense against the soul that has refined me like water. We are by nature selfish people and we are by nature a people of “fairness” There was NOTHING fair about Jesus’s death. There was nothing fair about Corrie’s losses. Yet GOD enabled them to lay it down in love. Jesus who by his very nature could have stopped the hanging on a cross did not. He Laid it all down in love. He forgave them.
Today I can think of 5 defining people for me. People who have abused me, or lied about me, or assaulted me with their words, judgment or actions. I lost health and homes because of these people. I lost my trust in goodness and in my value as a human being who matters. Inside me if I am not careful I can be “frozen” in my pain. God doesn’t say that we have to “feel forgiveness. He says we have to forgive because he forgave us. So I pray for him to enable me to stretch forth my hand every time unforgiveness comes into my heart. To keep praying for those people who have never cared how much they hurt me. To pray for them to be blessed and to heal whatever is broken in them. Hurting people hurt other people. God knew that and he forgave.

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