Written by cycleguy on October 24th, 2012

We are all wounded in some way.  Some in big ways. Some in small ways.  Some by words. Some by action/inaction.  Some on purpose. Some inadvertently.  Some emotional. Some physical. Some psychological.

I recently read the story of Richard Moore of Northern Ireland.  He was just 10 years old when he was coming home and a young British soldier shot him in the face with a rubber bullet.  Moore was blinded from that moment.  Throughout his life, as you can imagine, he struggled with anger, bitterness, rage, and revenge toward the British and particularly that soldier.

Thirty years after the incident, he knew he needed to put it behind him.  He was able to find the British soldier who had shot him and scheduled a meeting.  There, amid tears and regret, forgiveness was extended and received. Moore said, “After that, something peculiar and wonderful happened.  Something inside me changed.  I began to realize the gift of forgiveness I thought I was bestowing on the soldier was actually a gift from God to me. It didn’t matter if the soldier wanted or needed forgiveness; the gift freed me.

“All through my boyhood my mother had wanted the impossible for me-that I would be given back my sight.”  He remembered waking up only to find his mother kneeling at his bedside praying for his eyesight to be restored. Moore goes on to say, “When I met the soldier and forgave him, I believe my mother’s prayers were answered.  I was given a new vision, and my real wound, the one that needed healing more than my eyes, was healed.” The deeper wound, the real wound, have finally been healed.

I am not naive enough to believe that forgiveness means all is now well.  Forgiving someone doesn’t erase the consequences someone must face if the legal system is involved. Forgiveness does mean that at the end of the day you surrender your personal right to get even. Much has been written here and on other blogs about forgiveness and the freedom it brings.  The old adage of “I forgave and found out the prisoner I freed was me” is true.   I can say unequivocally that the lack of forgiveness is quite possibly the Number 1 obstacle to our freedom and joy.


Almost two years ago the church I pastor was hurt deeply by the actions of one person.  We now have a chance to extend grace to this hurting person because that person is now hurting…a mother has died. I have preached on forgiveness off and on for several years and have “hit it hard” the past two.  We will now see how effective the teaching has been.

Hurting people hurt people.  Wounded people wound people.  Forgiven people forgive people.  What about you?


25 Comments so far ↓

  1. Daniel says:

    Thank you for not delivering simple, canned crapola. I forgave and poof everything was magically O.K.. It is nice to know you live in the real world. (smiles)

  2. Tom says:

    Praying Bill that love will provide forgiveness and healing! Blessings!

  3. I pray that your church can follow your lead and also be forgiving. However, the church being made up of individuals, each at their own place with God at any given moment, well, the forgiveness web expands exponentially. Most likely many will be able to extend grace and show it in their actions. Others may not be ready to forgive but will try to “do the right thing” externally (which is at least a step). Still others may still feel the sting too greatly and be unable to gather God’s grace in their hearts for this person. Those people, if there are any, will then in their turn need forgiveness and grace, and on and on it goes like an ever growing and intertwining web in all directions.

    God always amazes me in how intricately everything is woven and how everything affects so many other everythings and it never ends. It just keeps spreading outwards in all directions, forever on earth. The same will go with the ability to forgive amongst your people. I pray that the Lord’s Spirit is able to reach so many hearts that this hurting person feels only His touch through your church.

    God bless all of you.

    • cycleguy says:

      I am also praying hard for what happens (if anything). I also know people are at different stages of grace, but I am praying that time has helped heal the wounds. I too pray for God’s Spirit to reach hearts. Thanks.

  4. Steve Martin says:

    I’ve been all of those.

    I’ll more than likely be all of those till my dying day.

    Thanks be to God that I have a Savior.

    I’m gonna need one.

  5. I agree. The thing is, it’s hard. But we are called to do hard things.

  6. jeff says:

    Forgiveness is definately a good prescription for what bothers you. It works.
    I don’t however let the person back into my life.
    The first time someone screws me …shame on them. The second time….shame on me.

  7. Susan says:

    I just put that same thought into a Facebook post yesterday. It’s hard to forgive, but in the long run it’s much harder to hold a grudge. It can kill you.

  8. Phil says:

    Man, way to hit me this morning Bill. 🙂 It’s funny how the simplest truths are still the most difficult to accept often times. Praying for you this morning as you take and continue this walk. Blessings

  9. Something I wrote (tweeted) today from my prep for a men’s event this Saturday seems to fit.

    “Forgiveness has enabled me to live the life God has intended for me, it’s so much more than being “saved” it’s a calling to become someone.”

    Forgiveness is freedom in my book. Thanks for sharing a inspirational post bro’

  10. floyd says:

    Great post, Bill. I’ve found in the past that the taste of revenge isn’t so sweet… in fact it’s down right sour. If our Savior could forgive the ones executing Him, shouldn’t we be able to find comfort in the same things? I always think to myself in times of struggling with forgiveness; Live by the sword die by the sword.

  11. Jason says:

    You don’t speak it..you live it. And that’s why you’re effective in your calling that God has placed upon you.

  12. Betty Draper says:

    Great post brother…forgiveness is the purest freedom there is.

  13. Debbie says:

    “Forgiven people forgive people.” I really like that, and need it. Thank you! There are a couple of really good songs out right now about forgiveness . . .



    God bless you and the church, as you forgive!