Forgiveness

Forgive
I attended a funeral today.  Very difficult funeral, as it was an untimely death of a young man only 25 years old.  Joseph William Clarkson, July 7, 1990 — April 24, 2016.  This young man is the son of Kevin and Cherie Clarkson, Pastors of First Baptist Church of Moore, OK.   Cherie’s brother, Pastor Tim Salter’s gave a closing message today.  He talked about grief using the story from John’s Gospel about Lazarus, from chapter 11.   He shared how people navigate grief.  How Mary and Martha navigated their grief with Jesus.  He talked about the amazing promise we have of resurrection in that Jesus Christ is truly the resurrection and the life.  He shared a hope-filled message. He reminded the family to be very close and encouraging in navigating grief.  He reminded all of us that life is short (James 4:14) and then he quoted from a plaque in the family home. “FORGIVE – Everyone, Everywhere, of Everything – ALWAYS!  I was immediately reminded of the words of Jesus in Matthew’s Gospel, chapters 6 and 18.  The Lord reminded me I needed to continue to let all my betrayers and offenders to go into His hands, and to pray for those who despitefully use us.  We are actually doing ourselves a big favor to forgive everyone, everywhere of everything, every day – Always.  So, I created this image above as a reminder of the real rainbow, for we shall all see the real rainbow around the judgment seat of Jesus.  We need to be ready always.  We never know when death will arrive to take someone we love.  We never know when it will be our time.  Please pray for the Clarkson family as they begin the journey of mourning their great loss.  My wife and I know this loss, we lost our Charity Hope four years ago on the same day the Clarkson’s lost their son.  April 24th will always be a very challenging day for both of our families.  May we become more like Jesus in our love and forgiveness.

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