Jim…. and his process of forgiveness

He had orders to go into the town and kill. When he got there, all he found was one family. A man and his wife and their children.

Tonight’s gathering at the local mall (the mall church) was going to be the most unusual yet. I just didn’t know it.

I came down the same way as usual, coming from the “dollar store” getting the snacks for the gathering. As I was walking over to get our tables and chairs set up, I noticed a man sitting off in the corner eating. I continued to set everything up and when finished, I went over to visit this man and invite him to join us later.

After inviting him to join us, he went into giving me his testimony about serving in the Vietnam war. It was then that he mentioned to me how that he was given orders to go into the next town and wipe them out. When he got there he found the family and killed them.

He said his name was “Jim”. I shared with him that forgiveness could be found in Christ. He agreed, but he could not forgive himself. I assured him that he must receive forgiveness from Christ first, then Christ will help him to forgive himself.

As he told me his story about his time in the war and what had happened, my heart really went out to him. I could not relate with what it must be like to have gone through this process of trying to find forgiveness for what he had done. How about the sleepless nights and the pain?

He had a guitar with him and said, “that’s my baby”. I said he was welcome to join us and play his guitar. He said he knew “amazing grace”. I told him to please come when he had finished his dinner.

I got over to the tables and found another brother waiting there. We visited a bit, then Hawk came over and joined us. He pulled out his guitar and began playing for us. He played and sang some old 60’s and 70’s songs. They were great! And yes, he even played amazing grace! We were blessed to say the least.

Soon, he shared about his battles with drugs. One time in particular, where he had hit twelve times with the needle. He went on to explain his “out of body” experience that night. He said that God brought him back for a reason. I assured him it was so.

He no longer battles drugs, but alcohol has got him. This didn’t surprise me because I had figured that one out earlier. It is nothing new hearing about those who have returned from war and into drugs and or alcohol.

The whole time he shared, he would play his guitar and sing, then stop and share. He told us about his girl friend who was trying to get him to go to church. She had her own set of problems. She was battling Meth.

Then he told us how he had spent 10yrs in the state prison for killing his best friend. His friend was trying to kill him, in turn he killed his friend. He shared how in prison that he became the “gardener”. He grew a beautiful garden with big beautiful flowers and lots of vegetables. He shared God through his creation, he said.

Throughout his testimony of his life we felt his pain. We encouraged him to find Christ and his forgiveness. It was obvious that he was not enjoying his way of easing the pain any longer.

Then our brother Justin said that he had some scriptures that he wanted to share. He read from Isaiah 55. “Ho! Everyone who thirsts,”………….

When he got the verse that says, “Why do you spend money for that which is not bread, and your wages for what does not satisfy?”  I noticed that Jim took noticed to this verse. This is what he had been doing. God’s word had spoke to him and stopped him in his tracks.

The awesome thing here was that Justin was sharing these verses from Isaiah that he had been studying the past week. He had planned to share them tonight without knowing that this man Jim was going to be there. This is what I see and enjoy about God all the time. He is always right on time. He is perfect and exact in all His ways!

The mall security guards came over and said that he could not play the guitar in the mall. It was OK, because he was done playing anyways.

I sensed that it was time to pray. I asked him if I could have his hand. He hesitated, but finally gave it to me. I looked him in the eye and shared Christ’s forgiveness with him. This was a serious time and he listened. Soon we all held hands and prayed.

He prayed, “God help me to receive your forgiveness so I can forgive myself for what I have done.”  He finished with saying, “I think I’m going to get teary eyed.”

We hugged and reminded him that we meet each Tuesday night. He took my card and said he would come.

Please remember Jim in your prayers. Most of us can’t relate with what he has gone through.

YOU GOTTA READ THE UPDATE AND REJOICE WITH ME!  https://rjperalta.wordpress.com/2010/02/20/hawk-update/

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2 Responses to “Jim…. and his process of forgiveness”

  1. Jim update « The Word on the Streets Says:

    […] my first post, “Jim …. and his process of forgiveness” https://rjperalta.wordpress.com/2010/02/10/Jim-and-his-process-of-forgiveness/ he has called me twice. The first time he called, I didn’t recognise his voice and mistook […]

  2. Nga Trippet Says:

    Found several other pages/post about this, apparently a hotter topic than I thought.

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