Pastor Shows The Power of Forgiveness

vlcsnap-2013-10-28-08h14m43s239 vlcsnap-2013-10-28-08h14m33s126 The Face of Forgiveness is a movement founded by a man whose life was forever changed, following a freak accident, only to become a testament to the power of forgiveness. It seemed like an ordinary day in July of 2001, Dr. Johannes Christian and his foster son were on their home from a family christening in Columbus Ohio, when a 15 year old boy threw a 8lb  rock over an overpass, just as the pastor drove underneath the bridge. The rock crashed through the windshield and hit Mr Christian on his face. That day was the beginning of a four year journey to recovery, and ever since then, Johannes Christian has taken his story of tragedy to triumph to countries throughout the world. He is presently in Belize and was a guest on Thursday’s Rise and Shine, where he recalled that pivotal day. Dr Johannes Christian vlcsnap-2013-10-28-08h14m15s189“This young man was 15, picked up an 8 lb. rock, about the size of a camel lump and he dropped it off of the bridge.  I was driving about 70mph on the highway.   The velocity from the rock falling off the gravitational pulled that into the windshield of my car, and the only thing that the rock hit was my face.   Needles to say, when that rock hit my face, it was like a bomb-head exploded in my face and all of the bones in my head were smashed.   The doctors did not believe that I would make it.   They didn’t think that I would live through this experience.   In the process I, my nose head came off; my eyes completely eradicated from my head.  I was just a mess.   When my son got here to see me, he was about 30 minutes away.   By the time he got to the hospital, when he came in, he looked at me and just collapsed; and he was…he just couldn’t believe.   He told his wife, “Daddy doesn’t have a face!” His son managed to grab hold of the vehicle and bring it to a stop on the side of the road. That night, Christian was airlifted to a trauma center in Dayton Ohio and for the next four years, underwent facial restructuring surgery. Bones were extracted from various parts of his body to construct a new nose and mouth; he was also granted prosthetic eyes. It was a grueling journey, no doubt, but a test of the spirit came when Christian felt God leading him to forgive the teen. Dr Johannes Christian vlcsnap-2013-10-28-08h22m35s80 “You know, he says, “forgive your brother 70” x 7”.  Ah, I said, Lord, no.   He said,”I want you to forgive Jacob, the young man who threw the rock”.  Lord, you got to be kidding!   This kid has wrecked my life!   But as I asked God and I asked God, the Word of God says, these things come that the Son of God might be glorified. You know, Bother Louis, I looked at folks having heart attacks and various breakdowns and all kinds of infirmities, and we don’t realize that a lot of that a lot of that generates from anger and malice that we hold in our hearts…and it’s that anger and that frustration that tears down our bodies and I know that once I started the forgiving process, it started healing faster than people would believe”. Jacob McNary pleaded guilty to attempted murder and was ordered to serve a 12 year sentence behind bars. It was during that time that he and Christian began to communicate through letters. A few years later, Christian made a trip to the prison, where the two spent hours talking. Today, Christian is a motivational speaker and author, sharing on the power of forgiveness. Dr Johannes Christian  “I hear from people, “Well, better you than me, I couldn’t just do that!  You know people could have lost kids because of gang violence, and I understand their hurt, I understand their hearts as being broken.   But I understand that the Word does not make exemption, the Word of God is clear:  If we don’t forgive our brother, then we do not deserve to be forgiven ourselves.   I forgave him and invited him to get saved in the court.   I want you to know, I am not holding malice against you; I’m not letting a rock send me to hell.   This is what I really was saying; I hold no grudge against him at this point.   He is free from me, and what that does is that it frees me on the other side; it allows me to be at peace with myself and peace with God”. Dr. Johannes Christian will be hosted by the Baptist Church in Belmopan, Saturday morning and later on that night at the San Ignacio Baptist Church.

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