Why Forgiveness Is So Important
Forgiveness Should Flow Abundantly Like A Fountain In Our Lives
Lays Potato Chips Honor People Who Forgive and Help Others In their Community
Today it is encouraging to see forgiveness being displayed by people within the community. Young men and women from juvenile detention centers are being given a second chance. Lara Spencer of the television news show Good Morning America featured an encouraging story where, “Lays whose campaign to honor people from across the country that bring positive change to their community. This morning we will talk to a restaurant owner and chef who believes in the power of food to turn the lives of young people around. At this upscale restaurant while some people receive a second course the staff receive a second chance.“
The company #Lays Potato Chips is sponsoring this community oriented program that gives individuals a second chance along with forgivenes. Chadd Houser passionately expressed, ”I’m the Founder, CEO and Executive Chef of Cafe Momentum. One of the top restaurants in Dallas,Texas but more importantly a twelve month paid internship for young men and young women exiting Dallas County Juvenile Detention Facilities. Things like the color of your skin, the social economic class we were born into, the part of town we are born in. These things matter and they shouldn’t but they do. That resinated in me and I thought that’s not the world l want to live in but l want to be a part of something different.”
#Lara Spencer continued the story by explaining, “Before Coviid-19 business was bustling. Chadd and his team are training young people to excel in every job in the restaurant also give them life skills, counseling and education to help them graduate, get a job and stay out of jail. Chadd told the group, ‘I love you with all my heart. Go get ready for dinner. Have a good shift.’ A young man named Demondric Pratt who is an intern at Cafe Momentum enthusiastically responded, ‘As soon as l put together my first shift, I was like this is wonderful. Just seeing the guests eat the food, I just started smiling that puts a big smile on my face.’ Chadd stated, ‘My hope for everyone of the young men and women that come through our program is to truly believe in themselves.’ Lara commended the efforts of this program and said, “And when the pandemic hit Chadd and his apprentice answered the call.” Chadd with tremendous excitement said, ‘We flipped the restaurant into a food distributor hub. We serve 350,000 meals to insecure students and their families across Dallas.’ Lara conclued, “Inspirational to us all. And those bags of potato chips with smiles and our inspiring stories are hitting store shelves this week.”
Forgiveness is the only way out. Forgiveness offers us the opportunity to free the world from our own condemnation of it. We are given opportunities to practice forgiveness of others until someday, we feel free enough to forgive ourselves.— Charles Henry
How Forgiveness Can Set You Free
Forgiveness is "the act of excusing a mistake or offense. Compassionate feelings that support a willingness to forgive." (The Free Dictionary by Farlex) These are powerful words that each of us can find doable. We are all imperfect and make mistakes. The author Charles Henry beautifully expressed how "Forgiveness is the only way out. Forgiveness offers us the opportunity to free the world from our own condemnation of it. We are given opportunities to practice forgiveness of others until someday, we feel free enough to forgive ourselves." Think seriously about how profound that statement is. Forgiveness evolves into the freedom of ourselves. It develops from within each individual. We make the decision to forgive others to help ourselves. When we hold onto resentment and hatred, it becomes pain within us. The person you have decided not to forgive may be moving on living their life. In the meantime, you are stuck with the thoughts of how and why you still dislike them. Lewis B. Smedes stated, "To forgive is to set a prisoner free and discover that the prisoner was you."
A few years ago a discussion was held about Michael Vick, a previous quarterback for #Philadelphia Eagles football team. He was convicted for illegal dog fights which he sponsored. Vick went to prison and served time for this mistake. Due to a lack of forgiveness, Michael Vick was unable to own another dog. Two individuals discussed this issue, and they felt he should never own a dog again. They compared Vick to a child predator. The question was asked, "Would a child predator who was found guilty, be allowed to be around children or have children again?" They concluded that similarly, Michael Vick should not be allowed to own a dog again. How sad to think that we now can use such innocent victims as children and dogs, to imprison ourselves and others from the freedom and beauty of true forgiveness. By creating victims, we can maintain "the right to be angry." This anger holds us hostage and we become the prisoner. Catherine Ponder expressed it this way, "When you hold resentment toward another, you are bound to that person or condition by an emotional link that is stronger than steel. Forgiveness is the only way to dissolve that link and get free."
By not practicing forgiveness, we relinquish the outstanding gift given to us by our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Through the undeserved kindness of Jehovah and his son, "He has delivered us from the dominion of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." (Colossians 1:13,14, The Holy Bible Revised Standard Version) We desperately needed this sacrifice in order to cover our trespasses against others. "For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father also will forgive you; but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." (Matthew 6:14,15 ) This warning comes not from man but from our Heavenly Father and his son Jesus. We cannot use innocent victims, as an excuse not to practice forgiveness. Our forgiveness must harmoniously become like a pardon of the offender, "as if the offense had not occurred." We must attempt to be "ready to forgive" just as Almighty God and his son Jesus, set the example for us to follow.
The confinement of Imperfection limits our true abilities to be forgiving. But we can gain true freedom by asking for help through prayer so that we can apply the principles of the Bible. Research can also help us as we read the thoughts of other imperfect individuals, who struggle with the practice of forgiveness. Forgiveness is a source of strength for us. Mahatma Gandi explained, "The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong." This strength we receive through forgiveness can allow others to grow as well as ourselves. Remember, number five of The Seven Pillars of Forgiveness. It is explained as, "Enhancement" where "Forgiveness teaches us to stand against the wrongful act or offense, not the human life that has committed it, else we deny another their future opportunity." The article went on to finally address "Continuance" as number seven, "In the exercise of forgiveness is the longing for the establishment of what ought to be, and the love of this as an inner devotion is connected to the love of life continuing."
Through forgiveness, we can grow and set ourselves free. If each individual practiced forgiveness, words like hatred, revenge and a lack of love would not exist. What a loving provision to work toward daily. Forgiveness not only helps others but it nourishes our growth as well. For additional information and support on how to practice forgiveness, go to www.jw.org
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A YouTube video about “Lays Potato Chip Company” and how they are made in America. Now they can be used to give forgiveness to those who need it.
A video from YouTube entitled, Forgive-Motivational Video by CJ Chan
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2010 Claudette Coleman Carter