The War Cry comments on forgiveness
DURING the course of this year, newspapers and bulletins have regularly reported, sometimes daily, on murders that have been committed across the country. In London alone 87 people were killed in the first seven months of the year.
When we encounter such reports every day, it can be easy to become desensitised to them or for our focus to be on how safe we feel in the place where we live. We don’t always give the victim more than a cursory thought. If the dead person seems particularly young, we may consider their parents, but our thoughts don’t normally stretch to the extended family – siblings, cousins, grandparents – and the devastating effect the killing has on them.
In this week’s War Cry we speak to Tayo O’Shea and her husband Jason. Tayo’s brother was murdered outside the school he attended when he was just 15 years old. Tayo describes the anger, hate and grief she initially felt, but then explains how her experiences prompted her and Jason to speak to children in primary schools about the importance of forgiveness.
‘Forgiving someone doesn’t mean that what they have done is OK,’ Jason says. ‘But it means that you are not carrying the negativity any longer.’
Forgiving someone for something they have done to hurt us is hard. It can be even more challenging if the hurt has been caused to someone we care for. But, as Jason says, if we don’t forgive, we carry negativity which, in turn, can harm our emotions, our relationships with people we care for and, in some cases, even our wider community.
Hard as it may be, it is in our own best interests to forgive. Not doing so only adds to the hurt that we’ve already experienced.
The War Cry
The War Cry
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