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Topic: "Murder by Family" by Kent Whitaker

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Subject: "Murder by Family" by Kent Whitaker
Date Posted: 12/19/2008 12:03 PM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2006
Posts: 2,110
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Wow.  I got done reading this a few days ago and it's still on my mind. 

This is the true story of a father whose oldest son hired friends to kill his whole family - the mom and younger brother died, but the father survived, and the son himself was only shot in the arm to try to make it look like he wasn't guilty.  The son denied it to his father, but then ran away when the authorities got closer to arresting him.  He was eventually found and brought back, tried, found guilty, and is now on death row in Texas.

But the part that is still stuck in my head is the part where the dad said that he now sees the shooting as God's will because God used it to bring the younger son to salvation (of course, this was an eventual realization, not his immediate reaction).  So, if the oldest son hadn't killed his mom and brother, he was just 'going through the actions' but empty inside, so would not have gone to Heaven.  But after the shooting the father showed the younger son forgiveness and true Christianity, and through that, the son became a Christian and now they will all be reunited in Heaven.  So, before the shooting, only 3 of the family would have gone to Heaven, but now the father can find joy because even though his wife and youngest son went early, all 4 of the family can be there together eventually.

Whether or not you believe in Christianity or what your views on salvation or Heaven are, that level of forgiveness still amazes me.  Being able to turn around the amount of pain and loss that the man would feel over losing his wife and son (and now having a son waiting to be executed) and not let it consume him just shows a peaceful strength that just doesn't seem logical.  It makes me wonder how different the world would be if we all could have that level of forgiveness...


Phooey on forgiveness