Family Of Claire Davis Forgives Her Murderer By Rebekah L. Stratton.
The parents of a murder victim have nobly chosen to forgive their daughter’s murderer for what he did.
Several weeks ago, an 18-year-old Colorado high school student named Karl Pierson shot and killed another student, 17-year-old Claire Davis. Police say they believe Pierson may have been upset after losing his spot on the school’s debate team and his intent was to confront a teacher with the gun. He fired shots down a hallway, and then, in a random act, pointed his gun at Davis who was sitting nearby. The gunshot wound sent Davis into a coma, and she passed away eight days later, just before Christmas. After shooting Davis, Pierson turned the gun on himself and took his own life.
Losing a child is one of the most painful experiences humans can have; especially in a situation such as this one, but Davis’ parents aren’t letting their emotions get in the way of doing what they know is right. At her funeral, her father, Michael, gave this statement:
“My wife and I forgive Karl Pierson for what he did. We would ask all of you here and all of you watching to forgive Karl Pierson. He didn’t know what he was doing … The fact is that Karl was so blinded by his emotions he didn’t know what he was doing … Unchecked anger and rage can lead to hatred, and unchecked hatred can lead to tragedy, blindness and a loss of humanity. The last thing Desiree [Claire’s mother] and I would want is to perpetuate this anger and rage and hatred in connection with Claire. Claire would also not want this.”
Upon hearing these words, many people surely asked themselves how they would react if put in the position of Davis’ parents. ‘Would I be able to forgive someone who killed my daughter? Or would my anger be too overwhelming?’
The truth is, none of us would feel like forgiving someone of something that hurt us so deeply. But we have to understand that forgiveness isn’t an emotion and it isn’t something we feel like doing. Instead, it’s something we choose to do. Forgiveness is a decision — an act of love that God commands us to participate in:
“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you” -Luke 6:27.
Something so difficult to do requires calling upon the Lord for strength. And when we ask God to bring us to a place of freedom from the weight of our burdens, we turn over to God our desire for the revenge to which we feel entitled. Vengeance is not our job — it is God’s, and we as humans aren’t meant to be responsible for it. We are only responsible to forgive.
“Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God …’” -Romans 12:19.
Mr Davis’ statement above reflects his understanding of what happens when we hold in our anger and rage: it spirals into hatred and bitterness. This is not what God wants for us. He wants us to surrender unto “the wrath of God,” which will, in turn, allow us to “love [our] enemies.” There is such freedom in this instruction!
May God Bless Nigeria, America And Israel And Take Care Of Us; May God Make His Face Shine Upon Us, And Be Gracious To Us; May The Lord Lift Up His Countenance Upon Us, And Give Us Peace, In Jesus Christ Name, We Pray! Amen!
May The Grace The Lord Jesus Christ, And The Love Of God, And The Fellowship Of The Holy Spirit Be With You All. Amen!