Blog: A Forgiveness Community


A Forgiveness Community

Posted in: Forgiveness | By: Dean Smith
September 22, 2011

For those that don’t know, though I am one of the pastors at a church in Seattle, I live nearly an hour away from that church in a small farming community.  Recently, our community suffered a great loss when a man murdered his wife and then committed suicide. This tragedy affected the entire town, but none more than the two surviving children. Though I’ve had the privilege of mentoring the 13 year old son who was left behind, I’ve been told that some family and friends are saying they could never offer forgiveness in this situation. 

Forgiveness is God’s solution to a problem He calls sin.
If we deal with sin in this world in any other way than forgiveness, then we will find ourselves sinking into more sin, more misery, more tainted relationships, and an overall lack of peace and joy. Not to mention, both passing the methodology of bitterness onto our offspring as well as throughout our sphere of influence.

This weekend the movie, “Live To Forgive” is going to be screened in my home town several times. There may be hundreds of people attending the showings who are still freshly grappling with the recent tragedy and their accompanying emotions. We believe the movie will give them encouragement and hope, realizing that:

  • “Forgiveness sets a prisoner free, only to realize the prisoner was us.”  (Matthew 18:34-35)
  • Forgiveness doesn’t mean forgetting the events, but instead; allowing God to heal your heart and mind from the bitterness, rage, and anger associated with the events.
  • Forgiveness is God’s will for your life, and His will always works out His best for you.
  • The best way to honor those who have passed, is by forgiving the offenders and living a life full and free from any poisonous thoughts of hatred or revenge. What seems impossible (like forgiving a murderer), is possible with God.

After this weekend my hope is that we can get closer to becoming a community that is committed to forgiving anyone for anything, all the time, while knowing that forgiveness is God’s solution to the problem He calls sin. This will free us from the burden of unforgiveness and release us to love ourselves and others to our highest potential. Interestingly, that is what Jesus said is the most important thing of all!

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