Doing The Impossible!

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At the tender age of 40 plus years, (I can hear my friends groaning and laughing out loud here…) I have learnt that life is full of surprises!  No surprise there right! But guess what…we are the ones who surprise ourselves the most, as our responses to situations and crises change when we begin to see these situations not just through our earth weary eyes, but through God’s glorious eyes. God’s view is so much grander!

A beloved family friend and counsellor once told me that people cannot make us mad, sad or depressed.  We, you and me, yes we daily choose our responses to each of life’s situations. It does not negate the awful experiences or the heart rending moments that we want to erase from our memories. It also does not mean that what happened to us isn’t wrong, or that a great injustice and harm was not done. But what it does mean, is that no matter what has been done to us, we are the only ones who can determine our responses. It was an earth shattering revelation for me then and still is now!

So I am going to recount a real life experience. Almost three years ago,  I met a war veteran who had been shot nine times while serving in the United States army. He was originally a citizen of Trinidad and Tobago, my native country. His story of how he became a US citizen is beyond extraordinary and actually had nothing to do with the army! But I won’t tell his story today. Instead, let me just say first, that we thank him and all the men and women who have served and who are currently serving in the US armed forces. If you are reading this article and you are also a member of the armed forces in the US and anywhere in the world, I say, thank you for your service. I know I digressed…so let me continue.

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While conversing with him, he said something that really intrigued me. He said, and I am paraphrasing here, that when he took those nine bullets on those three different occasions fighting in those wars, that he took those bullets for White Americans, Black Americans, Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans and even non US born persons like myself, to ensure that ALL Americans can be safe. The blood that he shed was the same color,  red,  for the White Americans, the Black Americans, the Hispanic Americans…you see where I am going!  Essentially, the blood that he shed, and lost, was for everyone. Now what does any of this have to do with surprises and with our responses to situations?


Christ’s death on the cross for us, will always remain a surprise, and a wonder! As a human being, we could never understand Jesus’ indescribable love and sacrifice for us.  What Jesus did dying on the cross for sins that He never committed, and then of course raising from death to life, was the impossible!!! Jesus Christ did not even know us (at least that’s what we think)!  Jesus’ last words on the cross were, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.”


Our response then to persons who have wronged us or who we perceive have wronged us, should be one of forgiveness, and then love.  That is a huge, really, truly big surprise! It’s tantamount to doing the impossible!  Just like Jesus! Especially if persons have been unkind, abusive, judgmental, cruel, merciless or even tortured us.   According to God’s Word, “I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me” Phillippians 4:13. 

Not my strength but His strength. Not my will, but God’s will. I must let God work through me to do the impossible and forgive. And not only to forgive but to love.

Lord, please, please help me to do the impossible! Help me to forgive and to love afresh each day!

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