A story ... a murder ... and God's forgiveness

How Did I Get out from the Abyss of Evil?

Source: WCC >> Evangelism Blog

I received a letter from a prisoner in Hong Kong who I shall call Jimmy. So far he has served ten years of a prison sentence for ‘a very serious crime.’ This is Jimmy’s story in Jimmy’s words.

I am still serving imprisonment since I committed a very serious crime I am not yet released even after more than ten years. In these years, I have met many people who committed different kinds of crime we shared our story and I know their reasons … I am even worse than them, because those people (rapists, thieves, robbery, drug related criminals) did not harm their families. I did. The tragedy happened when my mother-in-law intervened in my marital problems with my wife. I began to treat her as my enemy and forgot about her kindness towards me. In verbal and physical conflicts, I was very bitter and violent to her; and eventually, I murdered her. I was very scared. But at that moment, I was scared of the consequences of what I had done. Later on, I regretted that I not only took her precious life away, but also brought extreme sadness to my wife and her family.

Since I am imprisoned, many church volunteers, pastors and priests have come to visit me. The most precious thing is the gospel of the salvation of Jesus Christ about which they told me. They brought me a Bible and some booklets to help me to understand. Some (of them) were once criminals who were very helpless to get out from sin themselves; but after believing in Jesus, they did not think about committing crimes and began to have so much joy of being free from sinful thoughts. Their testimonies showed me that there is a God, who is righteous and merciful. I was touched by His love and decided to believe in Jesus as my Saviour. The more I attend the fellowship meeting (in prison), the more I understand God’s love, and the more I love God. From the Bible I learn that God created us after His likeness (Gen 1:27), which means every human being has the image of God. Since I love God, I should love every human being who has God’s image. Because of this thought, I don’t want to hurt anybody. I regret all my wrong behaviour which hurt others. Now I have the joy when I don’t think about revenge and cursing others; I have the peace when I put my trust in God and fear Him. These changes in my heart give me so much freedom. When I have problems with others, I will solve them rationally; ask for help from people and God. I will also forgive people.

Since (being converted) I rarely miss any meeting and have understood more about God’s righteousness and mercy. I am so touched by God’s love and hence I can love others. I realized how important it is to nurture my spiritual life through reading the Bible and listening to sermons and testimonies. Then I begin to give thanks to God and be filled with joy. I have learnt to love others as a way to love God. Because of this godly love, I am sensitive to others’ feelings and I am concerned about hurting people by my words and deeds. I also understand how terrible sin is and the importance of confession. Because of this godly love, I surely know that I have walked out from the abyss of evil.