Ever had someone in your life who was totally irritating, or even worse, actually hated you? How did you handle that person? I want to share a beautiful letter I received last week from India that describes how one of our HIM pastors dealt with just this type of difficult situation.
“Mr. A., a devout Hindu, hated his neighbor, Pastor D, with a passion, and looked for ways to destroy his life. He vowed to ruin Pastor D’s name and discredit his ministry. Mr A was constantly hurling insults at Pastor D and trying to stir up trouble in the neighborhood.
He made life very unpleasant for Pastor D, but even though it was difficult, Pastor D was friendly to Mr. A. The Pastor and his church chose to pray for Mr.A regularly.
A year later Pastor D was surprised to get a phone call from the wife of Mr. A. She was crying and frantically begging Pastor D to come quickly to the hospital. Pastor D initially was hesitant to open himself to further abuse by Mr.A, but he agreed to go and took some of his church elders with him.
Mr. A had kidney failure and had been receiving weekly dialysis treatments at the hospital for months. But this particular day, the doctor informed his wife that Mr. A’s kidney was not able to handle dialysis anymore and all his organs were beginning to shut down. He gave Mr A only a few hours to live.
Entering the hospital room, Pastor D encountered a very different Mr. A. There were tears streaming down his face as looked up at Pastor D, begged for forgiveness and asked for a blessing.
Pastor D prayed, “Lord Jesus Christ, just as You have forgiven us our sins, we are called to forgive others…so I along with my church forgive Mr. A. In your name Christ, we release healing along with forgiveness and freedom to Mr.A.”
The next morning was Sunday, and the doctor visited Mr. A. expecting to see a dead body. Instead, Mr. A. was dangling his legs from the side of the bed and smiling at the shocked doctor. After running a series of tests, the doctor found no sign of any kidney failure.
Mr. A and his family went straight to Pastor D’s church where Mr. A faced the cross and begged loudly for God to forgive him. He and his whole family embraced Christ.”
The Pastor concluded his letter: “What did we learn from this ?!!
That as disciples of Christ, we have the authority not only to release
Forgiveness, but to release healing and freedom as well. So lets use our tongue to release His goodness on earth and bless people wherever we are!!”
Think how differently this story would have ended if Pastor D had responded to Mr. A with hatred. As children of God, we have something far more powerful than hatred and revenge. We have the power to transform others by releasing love and blessing into their lives.
“Live as children of light, for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth.” (Ephesians 5:8) “Let your light so shine before others, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven.” (Matthew 5:16)
Please come join us this Sunday at 9:00 AM or 11:00 AM. We will discuss how to walk as children of light in my sermon, “Servant Leaders,” part of our current series, “Promotion in the Lord.”