If you were alive back in the 1970s, you may remember Evel Knievel, the motorcycle riding daredevil who pushed the limits of his art further and further until there were no more bones left in his body to break.
On September 8, 1974, Mr. Knievel attempted a jump that he had dreamed of in 1966. A customized rocket was made for the jump because it was much further than the span of twenty school buses he attempted earlier. It seemed every detail had been thought out. The rocket would surely thrust him to the other side with room to spare.
Unfortunately, the parachute that would soften his landing ended up causing him to drift to the bottom of the canyon.
But it was worth a try, right?
And it looked pretty neat on TV.
That canyon was pretty big for a guy to jump over. Death was a really big part of the risk. Fortunately, Evel walked away with only minor injuries.
There is a huge difference in intentions and actions. There is a spacious chasm between inability and unwillingness. But maybe you see it like Evel Knievel did when he first dreamed of jumping the Grand Canyon.
“I was drunk and the canyon looked smaller and smaller.”
Let’s look at forgiveness.
Jesus said that we are to forgive others, even seventy times seven times. That is close to five hundred, not that He expected us to keep count. But think of this. If you could do it five hundred times, then it’s not a matter of being able to forgive, is it?
No, it’s a matter of being unwilling if we say that we can’t.
If you don’t forgive someone when they’ve wronged you, then you are trapped. You give that person permission to torture you because you’ve chosen to hold a grudge so tightly that your hands are like a dead man’s – only a crowbar could pry them off.
“But that nut did me so dirty, I can’t forget it. I’ll carry that offense to my grave.”
And you might just get there faster.
Don’t worry about whether that nut wants to be forgiven. Do it for you. It’s your get out of jail free card. Use it.
He won’t care if you forgive him or not. But your intestines will. They’ll thank you, and you’ll be free to go on living.