Here I simply want to quote the recently deceased Brennan Manning, and then point to a real life story of forgiveness, which is featured here.
“God calls His Children to a countercultural lifestyle of forgiveness in a world that demands an eye for an eye–and worse. But if loving God is the first commandment, and loving our neighbor proves our love of God, and if it is easy to love those who love us, then loving our enemies must be the filial badge that identifies Abba’s children.” (Manning, Abba’s Child, p. 67).
I believe what Manning is saying here finds a wonderful application in a real life story of forgiveness that I just read about here. According to the article,
The day Anthony Colon heard his older brother had been gunned down in East Harlem, he began struggling with a rage that would last for years.
But Mr. Colon would get married, have two children, and welcomed religion into his life–a religion that would overwhelmed him by a desire to be reconciled to his brother’s killer.
Mr. Colon didn’t just thought and talk forgiveness and reconciliation. He took action.
But if we can try and get pass our prejudice or apathy, then I’m sure we’ll see here what applying the teachings of Jesus really does: it creates kingdom communities, where the rule of Christ is slowly replacing the hate and evil of this fallen world.
Now the article doesn’t specify what religion Mr. Colon had welcomed. It may have been Christianity. I don’t really know. But it sure corresponds to Jesus’ teaching on love and forgiveness, especially toward those who have wronged us.
And now these two men are determined to make a difference.
(Read entire article here)