Ready to forgive, ready for peace

You can forgive—no matter what has happened.

In Caux, Switzerland, there is an international center for global transformation; its goal is to lead people toward peace and forgiveness. When a friend of mine recently attended a conference there, she heard many stories from people who had suffered greatly—some had even been victims of genocide. Yet Christians and non-Christians alike found peace by forgiving these injustices.

Their example confirmed a feeling I have long had that one can't find true peace without letting go of hurt feelings, jealousies, hate, and anger. What enemies to peace these are. But how does one forgive genocide; bombings that kill innocent people, including children; or terrorism that destroys property and promotes hate? Even lesser acts can seem almost impossible to forgive, let alone forget.

The answer for most of the people at the conference at Caux was to get a more God-centered understanding of events. Many found their peace in Christ Jesus' words: "Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; that ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven" (Matt. 5:43–45).

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"Father, forgive them"
June 8, 1998

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