Open Arms of Forgiveness

It was a cold December night just a few weeks ago, my mom and I had just finished supper, we turned on a relaxing family sitcom. It felt like a normal day. Until we heard a ding dong from the front door. Only mom and I were on the main floor, while the rest of the Gary-brews were all getting ready for bed. Mom got up and open the door, and her voice was surprise. At first, I thought it might be a solicitor, but it was a little late and at 6 p.m. it was pitch dark outside. I heard a man’s voice that remembered. Then mom called me to the front door that there was a “old-friend”.
As I walked to the door, I replayed this mystery man voice again in my head, I was guessing who it could be. Then I saw who it was, and I was even more surprised, and I was doubting who it really was. I thought in my head, is it really him? I thought for a second while still walking and thought I might be imagining it and thought it could be someone else that I knew. I blinked my eyes as I got closer, and it was really him.
If you have read my book or half way through, it was an old friend that was the father of my childhood best-friend who is in the Air Force. If you have not read this chapter yet I don’t intend to not spoil this chapter. He had been a very close friend of mine but not too much longer after the horse accident, he had stated hurtful words that really changed my whole life. Even though, these words had poisoned my thoughts, at the end I had turned his hurtful words into a positive outcome. All of this has changed me to a strong and mighty man of God both physically and spiritually.
It had been a long time since I had seen him. About a year after my horse accident, we separated ways in our lives. It had been 12 years since I had seen him face to face. When I got close to him instead of looking for revenge or yelling at him for ruining my life, I responded in what Jesus taught to all of us full of his mercy and grace, love and compassion, and with a great smile that shows his forgiveness. My identify was focused on Christ.
In my chapter called “The Bodybuilder”, I had described that back when this man came over to visit me, that in his eyes were full of tears that was a big surprising to me because of all the years that I had known him since I was 6 years old, I had never seen him be an emotional guy buy a tough man from the years that he was in the Air Force Academy. Yet when he had saw me not too much after the horse accident with my scars on my head, arm, and shoulder, tears came to his eyes from who he had known as a kid for many years. He could not picture me as one that he loved being hurt. In that chapter, I shared that he ran with tears in his eyes and hugged me.
Now that he saw me again 13 and a half after the horse accident, I received another hug with new tears in his eyes. His tears were a mix with what he could remember from the past yet who I have become as a healed and healthy man. He had seen the seed inside of me progress and grow to who I am today. With my Christ-like behavior, instead of me walking away, I opened my arms for his hug as he reached out to me. My arms were wide opened with the forgiveness of my past and when I saw him, I only picture the good times we had had together. Alike to the parable that Jesus had shared of the prodigal son, in this story the father when he saw his rebellious son, the father had rejoiced and ran to his son with open arms full of mercy, grace, and forgiveness, instead of him having a harden heart. My arms were welcoming him in forgiveness and like the father in the parable, I was not picturing the hurts that he had done but was rejoicing. After that, my old friend and I went old friend went outside and visited for a few more minutes and he hugged me two more times. My “old friend” may never know how he hurt me or ever read my book, it does not matter because as I continue on growing closer to Christ the more, I know and learn to forgive others that have hurt me. My grace is growing like Christ more than bitterness and harden heart. My forgiveness in Christ is more important than revenge and anger.
My friends, to you have any unforgiveness in your hearts from the past or a friend that hurt you. Remember that to be like Christ, having open arms of forgiveness is the key. For Jesus loved us so much he forgave us for all of our sins, why not do the same and forgive others that have hurt us. Remember the story when Peter had asked Jesus how many time one forgive one another, and Peter guessed seven times. “Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you seven times, but seventy-seven times.” (Matthew 18:22). In this Jesus was describing as an endless of forgiveness. Be imitators of Christ with your mercy, grace and unlimited forgiveness to others.

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