It was during one of our Wednesday night youth meetings that I had at our little town church in Texas “that God showed me how awesome he truly is.”
It was a cool damp evening and we were waiting for one of the youth’s to join us, he usually came to the meeting on time but seemed to be late this particular night.
Even though he was mentally challenged everyone enjoyed having him at the meetings, they welcomed him with opened arms. My husband and I had raised our daughters to treat everyone with kindness no matter what state of mind they were in, not realizing that our youngest daughter’s kindness could have cost her life that night.
Just as I decided to start the meeting he came into the church, wearing his coat with one hand stuck inside it. As I stepped down from the podium to shake his free hand welcoming him to the meeting, he became very upset with me and pushed me to the side as he walked past everyone down the hallway and into the Sunday school class.
I wasn’t sure what was going on, so not to alarm the youths I decided to start the meeting with some singing.
We had just begun singing when one of the youths motioned to me that the boy who was late was calling to me. I asked the youth to continue singing while I went to see what he wanted.
I stepped down from the podium and walked down the hallway. As I came closer to him I could see he was standing there with a woman’s necklace wrapped around a knife in his hand that earlier had been hidden in his coat.
My first thought was he going to have to go over the top of me to get to the youths that were still in the chapel waiting for me to return. They didn’t have any idea what was happening, and I was planning on keeping it that way.
It is during this time I started to pray. There was no time for a long prayer, so I just started to say, “send the angels Lord send the angels.”
That’s all that seemed to come to mind.
I asked him why he had the knife and all he would say was, “I have to hurt her.”
I would ask, “who?”
He would look at me and say, “you know who.”
In my heart I knew that it was our youngest daughter, but I couldn’t say her name. If I did I knew I would be condemning her.
So I tried not to say her name, but the more I tried the madder he got. My mind was racing with so many thoughts, most of all, “please God help me protect her.”
As he continued to argue with me I knew I was running out of time, so I said it, I spoke her name.
My heart broke in a thousand peaces. Then I asked him why when all she ever showed him was kindness.
It was during this time I heard God say, “take the knife now.”
So with all my strength I grabbed the knife out of his hand before he could stop me. With complete surprise on his face I mustered all the strength I had inside of me and sent him back to the Sunday school class.
Inside I was shaking so hard I didn’t think I could breath.
I rushed back into the chapel told everyone to leave and to hide our daughter.
The police were informed and the young man was taken to jail.
Am I angry with this young man? No, I prayed that he would get some much-needed help.
I have no idea what has become of him, I just pray all is well.
IGod has taught me what true forgiveness is all about In Mark 11:25: “And when ye stand praying forgive, if ye have aught against any; that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.”
Was it easy to forgive him? Heck no, not at first, but with ‘s God help it became possible.
It is the greatest gift we can give each other, so let’s start this new year out by learning to forgive those that hurt you.
It’s like I heard someone once say, “it’s easier to be mad than forgive,” but I would rather have peace than anger.
How about you?
Happy New Year