Honestly, I don’t remember 1994. A toddler and an infant filled my days with diapers, midnight feedings, messy kisses, sweet giggles, and lots of firsts. The year blurs into the rest of the decade. But half a world away, for an entire country, 1994 looms like an ominous cloud in history. Beginning in April of 1994, and continuing for almost 100 days, over 500,000 Rwandan’s suffered death and persecution at the hands of their former friends and neighbors.
While I tucked my babies in at night, other moms quieted their starving babies for fear of discovery.
While we moved into our home, others escaped theirs in the night.
While I read Good Night Moon to my three year old, recently orphaned Rwandan children huddled in the marshes night after night waiting for rescue.
While I enjoyed the safety, blessing and comfort of a loving husband, women on another continent suffered the cruelty and brutality of merciless men.

While we lived in relative harmony with our neighbors and in our community, villagers in Rwanda terrorized, tortured, and murdered their neighbors.

Reading as we forgive by Catherine Claire Larson, opened my eyes and heart not only to the pain these fellow humans endured during the Rwandan genocide of 1994, but also to the tremendous capacity for humans to forgive the unforgivable. The book relates several true stories of forgiveness between victim and offender. Unbelievable tales of reconciliation that demonstrate that healing for a war torn country is possible, each personal story inspires me to practice true forgiveness in my own life on a daily basis.

I’m thankful for my life and that, for whatever reason, I’ve been thus far spared the pain these people endured. But I never again want to be so consumed with my own small corner of this planet that I’m completely blind to another country’s suffering.

Our Father which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done in earth,
as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our debts,
as we forgive our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil:
For thine is the kingdom,
and the power,
and the glory,
for ever.

Jesus prayer in Matthew 6
King James Version

Want to know more? Here’s a few websites:

as we forgive

The Umuvumu Tree Project

The United State Holocaust Memorial Museum
Restorative Justice

*Please forgive the strange blogspot induced spacing.


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