Lenten Devotional, March 16: By Diane Dillard

By Diane Dillard

Get rid of all bitterness, rage, and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice.  Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. –Ephesians 4:31-32 

When I think about forgiveness — I think about Tim McGraw.  Let me explain. I love Country & Western music and it is the music genre of choice while I am driving. However, until one memorable day, I never considered that one of these songs would be the catalyst for personal, spiritual insight. On that day while I was driving, Tim McGraw’s voice came over my radio and sang the song “Live Like You Were Dying.”

Live Like You Were Dying

(Written by Tim Nichols and Craig Wiseman)

He said

I was in my early forties

With a lot of life before me

And a moment came that stopped me on a dime

I spent most of the next days

Looking at the x-rays

Talkin' 'bout the options

And talkin' 'bout sweet time

I asked him

"When it sank in

That this might really be the real end

How's it hit you

When you get that kind of news?

Man, what'd you do?

He said

I went skydiving

I went Rocky Mountain climbing

I went 2.7 seconds on a bull named Fumanchu

And I loved deeper

And I spoke sweeter

And I gave forgiveness I'd been denying

And he said

"Someday I hope you get the chance

To live like you were dying." 

Prior to that day I had been asking God to help me forgive someone and to help me let go of the anger and resentment that had built up inside me. I knew I needed to forgive this person and I wanted to forgive this person — but my heart was the holdout. Then Tim McGraw sang those words:

And I gave forgiveness I’d been denying

Suddenly everything was put into its proper perspective. I gave forgiveness, and the anger and resentment that had occupied so many of my thoughts simply melted away. I was free of that burden. I felt so good. I felt so close to God.

Who knew that God could answer prayers through Tim McGraw?


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