Forgiveness in Action

Western Theological Seminary Students

READ : Matthew 6:9-15

Withering under the weight of my desire to succeed, I leaned toward the student next to me in class and asked him for the answer to test question number 3. Hastily I jotted down the stolen information and quickly turned the test in to Mr. Sanderson. As I lay in bed that night my guilty conscience screamed “confess, confess, confess,” so, with my stomach spinning and my heart pounding, I made the trek up the two flights of stairs to my parent’s bedroom. Through tears and sobs I confessed to them that I had cheated on the test. Gracious but firm, they suggested I confess to Mr. Sanderson.

The usual short walk to school the next day seemed like miles. The cracks in the sidewalk seemed to underline the prospect of expulsion and failure. To my grateful surprise Mr. Sanderson didn’t expel me or even fail me. Instead he marked test question number 3 wrong. He forgave me and he prayed with me. There I stood, a seventh grader at a public school experiencing the grace of Jesus through the faithfulness of one of his followers. Although I wasn’t aware of it at the time, I realize now that Mr. Sanderson must have been living by the Lord’s Prayer.

– Jonathon Brown


Gracious God, as we have been forgiven, help us forgive.