Viral forgiveness

We forgive because we have been forgiven.

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A “Forgive to Live” testimony filmed by Adventist Media (AM) for the Health specialists in the Discipleship Ministry Team (DMT) at the South Pacific Division (SPD) has gone viral on Facebook. The SPD Health Facebook page had a reach of 2,400,000 and 6100 shares. This caused frantic discussion and work in the Church offices. The AM Discovery team developed an online course on forgiveness. The DMT Health team, meanwhile, worked with AM to set up a website (www.forgivetolive.org.au) to direct people to the forgiveness course. Agility at work.

Forgive to Live is a seminar that the DMT Health team put together with Dr Dick Tibbits, from the USA, and Dr Marcha William, from Queensland, for local churches to use as part of their community outreach. As part of the DVD series, testimonies from Australians who have faced horrific pain and injustice were filmed. One of these stories, by Junior Sulusi, went viral.

Add to the numbers by watching the video below, and head to the SPD Health Facebook page to share it with family and friends.

People are seeking practical and spiritual answers to life’s core challenges and the gospel has the answer. I have had to learn to forgive others and myself—over smaller issues. However, to forgive is among the best decisions I have ever made.

Jesus’ example of forgiveness is the one I try to follow. “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do” (Luke 23:34 ESV). He cried as He hung on the cross. He was asking God to forgive those who had crucified Him—the decision-makers and executioners. They deserved justice—punishment—but Jesus did not want to die with regret, holding a grudge until death. Everyone who is forgiven by someone else deserves justice. So the act of forgiving places the blame on the perpetrators but “forgoes” or gives up on desiring justice. This process releases the burden of justice. Then we are spiritually and emotionally free. Forgiveness is core to being a disciple of Jesus (Ephesians 4:32).

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