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I can still remember hearing and reading about the milkman who walked into the small one-room schoolhouse, and killed 5 little Amish girls. I remember feeling physically sick. I have a girl—close to the same age as some of the girls who died—and it horrifies me to think about what those children and those parents went through. But the story from Lancaster Pennsylvania, quickly changed from a story of evil to a story of forgiveness. It was literally breathtaking to hear family members almost immediately forgive and offer condolences to the perpetrator’s family. If you remember, the news reporters didn’t know what to do with it. It was mind-blowing. How does that happen? Would I have responded the same way?

The Amish in Pennsylvania, along with a few other stories we’ve heard about recently, exemplify the most difficult common calling in the Bible—the call to love and forgive our enemies. I don’t know about the bad things that have happened to you, and please hear me when I say that I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through—I’ve been through some really bad stuff too. Yet regardless of the evil perpetrated against us, you and I are still called to love and forgive our enemies. May God help us do that which seems impossible.

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