Before we start sharing words, I always like to start with something a little interesting.
It was preaching time, and the preacher came up and was talking about forgiveness, forgiving your enemies. The preacher asked for a show of hands, “Who is ready to forgive your enemies?” About 50% of the congregation raised their hands, “I’m ready.”
The minister continued on, about 20 minutes, and then asked again, “Who is now ready to forgive their enemies?” About 80% of the people, but there were a couple of people not raising their hands. He went on again for another 15 minutes, asked the question again, “Now who is ready to forgive their enemies?” EVERYBODY raised their hands except for one person. The person’s name was Mr. Jones.
The preacher asked Mr. Joes “Are you not willing to forgive your enemy? Everyone here is will to forgive their enemies? Are you not willing to forgive your enemies?” Mr. Jones says, “I don’t have any enemies.” “Mr. Jones, this is very unusual,” the preacher said. “I know you’re 86 years old, it’s almost impossible to live your live without making a single enemy. Can you come up here and explain how you lived that long without making a single enemy, without having one enemy in the world.”
Mr. Jones teetered up to the front and briefly explained, “It’s very easy. I’ve outlived them all!” (Laughter)
Sermon: Standing up in Faith / May 16, 2009