It is always stunning to me when I reflect on this word of Christ from the cross. In the last breaths He took He asked God to forgive the very ones who had nailed his body to that cross and forgive the ones who were taunting Him. Jesus didn’t die mad; He forgave. Life is way too short to live it mad. We all get angry with folks in this life. It’s human to get angry or want to get even. It is divine to get angry and then forgive and let it go. Someone once told me that when you have been hurt, you have three choices: flee, fight, or forgive. Fleeing is when you decide to never have anything to do with that person, and it is a choosing to stay mad. To fight is an option, and many houses, homes, offices, and families have become combat zones. It just becomes a way of life, and getting even is the goal. But to forgive is the best option. That is the way of Jesus for dealing with wounds and hurts. You can say, “But wait a minute, suppose I’ve done nothing wrong. I’m not the one who cheated or lied. I’m not the guilty party, and you tell me I have to forgive?” Well, Jesus wasn’t in the wrong either. He had every right as a human being to be angry, to bring down the fire of God on His tormenters, but He chose to forgive. It is the way to life and peace. Life is too short to live and die mad. Forgiveness isn’t an optional activity. It isn’t easy, but it is God’s way to life, to health, and to healing for the wounds in our life.
– Dr. Tim Thompson