Merry Christmas! I’m so glad that you’ve taken the time to check on me during your busy holiday. I’ll be sharing an amazing testimony of Jesus from Marciá, who awoke to God’s love for her. The apostle Paul put it this way:
“He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love, in whom we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins.” 1
A Darkened Past…
Marciá explained that she was involved with Victim’s Services in Amarillo, Texas, as a result of her mom’s rape and murder in 1989. She “carried the torch” to keep her killer in prison by releasing her hurt, anger and heartbreak in letters to the parole board. But at the same time, she found forgiveness, especially after the killer’s death in the prison hospital as a broken old man.
She said, “I knew I had forgiven him when I got the call from Texas, because there was no joy, rather tears for the two lives lost. The hurt was gone!”
At the same time, she was dealing with a sadistic monster of a husband, who beat her with karate kicks to the ground, held a cold steel knife to her three-year-old daughter’s skin and abused her and her babies for the sixteen months they were married. When he died this year, she threw a party, made a cake, set off fireworks, danced and turned cart wheels in her new dress. She now speaks out publicly about her experiences.
Surprisingly, she asked me this question: “How can I forgive this monster who bragged to everyone until his dying day that ‘I did all that damage and never broke a bone in my foot. Damn, I’m good!’ I hate him mostly for hurting my babies just to hurt me! He ruined our lives! And yes, I hope he’s doing backstrokes in the lake of fire, but I know I shouldn’t feel this way. How do I get past this? As a minister of the Gospel, do you have any words of wisdom?
God’s Marvelous Love…
After responding to a couple of her letters, I was rocked by her latest response:
“I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart for starting Abounding Love and for helping me to understand how God could love me and what it means to be saved!
“I am now born again, praise Jesus, and I want to share this news with you! I cannot explain it, however, I am sure that as a born-again saint, you know exactly what I mean. There is a change in my heart, a powerful love from deep within, and I feel so happy, so fulfilled and as I have been immersing myself in God’s word, I feel a hunger that cannot be satisfied; I want more and more of Jesus.
“I now get it that God loves me, not because of anything I’ve done, but simply because I am His beloved child! I belong to Him, and I always did, and maybe I didn’t think He could possibly love me, because I couldn’t love me (in a healthy and balanced way of course). I have forgiven my ex-husband as well!
“I’m going over the “Choose Life or Death” portion on your website and the Lord’s anointing is definitely on you and this ministry. It is all so simple really. I was terribly confused because I had received mixed messages and been horribly wounded. If we’re not careful about who we listen to, we can remain lost and confused! I wanted to say thank you and God bless you.” Marciá, KY.
How Can I Forgive?
I don’t recall everything I wrote to Marciá, but I do remember saying, “If we don’t know God’s love and forgiveness for us, how can we love and forgive others?” This is different from the new-age teaching of loving yourself. Listen to the apostle Paul, writing,
“Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” 2
My heart’s desire was to make sure that Mariá was born again, because true forgiveness can only be achieved through knowing God’s love and forgiveness for ourselves. Then, our born-again spirit empowers us to love and forgive those who have so deeply hurt us. Hurts that would be impossible to let go without knowing God loves us.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is of God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. He who does not love does not know God, for God is love.” 3
How About You?
There may be a few folks who haven’t been hurt or hurt someone, but most of us have experienced and dealt with the pain of past conflicts with what becomes an addiction, and sadly, displaying anger, evil speaking, and even violence.
I don’t know all the struggles that Marciá or even you have experienced, but I do know that she turned to God’s lovingkindness and became tenderhearted, forgiving those who hurt her as God in Christ forgave her. If Marciá can experience such great forgiveness, you can too!
“Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.” 4
A Prayer For You…
Thank You, Jesus, for loving me! Today, I receive Your complete forgiveness in my life for all my sins, hurts, mistakes and failings. I release them all into Your loving hands. I declare that in You, I am completely forgiven, free, accepted, favored, made righteous, blessed, loved, and graced with the ability to love and forgive others in Jesus’ Name. Amen!
Scripture References (NKJV):
1) Col. 1:13,14
2) Eph. 4:31,32
3) 1 Jn. 4:7,8
4) Col 3:12,13