Stories of Forgiveness – 1
A six-year-old girl in New Orleans was the first black student to attend a mixed school after apartheid. The white people were so disturbed that a black girl was going to a school that was formerly all-white, that she had to be escorted by Federal Marshals. The white students boycotted the school and there were mobs of people protesting and screaming at her every day when she went to and left school.
And she would be saying something under her breath as she walked in. When asked what she was saying, she said, “I am praying to God to forgive them.” When asked why she would do that, she said, “Don’t you think they need to be forgiven?”
Stories of Forgiveness – 2
A young man was once flirting with a girl in a bar. He began touching her and this so enraged the girl that she pulled out a knife. Moments later she had stabbed him to death.
She spent the rest of her life in jail miserably living with the guilt of having killing someone who had a whole life ahead of him. But there was one woman who somehow took compassion on this murderer. She regularly visited her in prison to help her deal with her grief and support her in any way she could.
That person who helped this girl was a most unlikely candidate for this job. It was the mother of the young man this girl stabbed to death.
Stories of Forgiveness – 4
I found this amazing story and wanted to share it with you.
On March 23, 1995, my 17-year-old daughter, Nicole, opened the door of her father’s house to a 16-year-old young man named LeVaughn whom she knew. LeVaughn came into the house and they began to argue over drugs.
LeVaughn picked up the butcher knife from the kitchen counter and stabbed Nicole to death. My only child lay dying on the floor of the living room, her eyes still open. The last sight she saw that day was the face of the young man who was killing her. This young man whom I had never met in my life, came into my life that day and changed my life forever.
I waited one year to be faced with the young man who had changed my life forever. He was hostile and angry during the trial. My greatest fear was that he would get the death penalty and that I would then have to fight to never allow that to happen. But God knew that wasn’t how He wanted me to spend my time. LeVaughn was found guilty of second-degree murder and sentenced to thirty-eight years with no probation.
God had other plans for my life. LeVaughn still looked angry when he was sentenced two weeks later. Only now, he was sitting right next to me as I stood at the podium to address the court and the judge, but I was warned not to address LeVaughn. I was told I couldn’t speak to this person who had changed my life forever, and he was sitting right next to me.
I began reading what I had written and then God spoke to my heart. I needed to talk to this young man. It might be my only opportunity. I turned and looked into his face. This was the face that my daughter saw as she lay dying on the living room floor just one year ago, and now I was looking into that same face. I told LeVaughn that I was not angry with him, but that I felt very hurt. I told him that I had compassion for him and that I hoped that he could somehow find a way to turn his life around.
And lastly, I told him that I would be praying for him. The face that was so full of anger was now looking at me in disbelief, and the anger was gone.
When I walked away from the courthouse that day, I knew that God had given both of us a gift. It was the gift of forgiveness. I was able to forgive the young man who murdered my daughter. Not because he asked me too, but because it was what God wanted for both of us. God was never going to be able to use me if I was angry. Forgiveness brings peace. And with that peace comes overwhelming joy. The joy of knowing that God will forgive me just as I have forgiven.