Power of Forgiveness

Power of Forgiveness

Ruth Veltkamp visited the CLI headquarters this week. Shared about her ministry and the power of forgiveness.

Ruth taught English in West Africa during her 20s, but most importantly, she shared the gospel with many lost souls.
She brought some Muslims to the LORD and they in turn brought in many more.  This work contributed to the planting of churches with the Muslim converts.
Ruth studied the Qur’an and discovered the many similarities to the Bible but also found the key differences. A huge difference is that the Qur’an states God staged a crucifixion, but it was not Jesus who died. Jesus was too righteous to die as a criminal. This completely missed the point of Jesus dying to take the punishment for our sins so that we could be forgiven.
Ruth took her insight to show Muslim school children the love of God and the power of forgiveness!
Ruth personally experienced the power of forgiveness.
As Ruth was leading Muslims to the Lord, she came under spiritual attack. A fellow worker started to gossip about her. This worker wrote a letter slandering her character. Ruth wrote down what was true in the letter and what was false, but she kept the letter as a reminder of how she’d been wronged by this person.
Ruth continued to bring people to Christ. Some individuals who didn’t like this could communicate with evil spirits and started to curse Ruth. Ruth got sick with five different illnesses.
One reason the curses could affect her was because she had bitterness toward the worker who had written the letter. Ruth had every right to be upset with that worker; she had been wronged! But Ruth was holding her fellow worker’s sin against her; sure, Ruth didn’t do anything mean to that worker, but she became embittered toward her. She wasn’t forgiving her debtors as God forgives us. It wasn’t enough for Ruth to just “forgive” her. She needed to bless that worker with joy.
Ruth, first of all, burned the letter against her because keeping it represented her bitterness. Then she asked God for his power to bless the one who had wronged her.  She then prayed for as many blessings as you could think of about that worker. Immediately, Ruth was healed from her chest pain and other diseases, but most importantly healed from bitterness.
Forgiveness is a powerful and important aspect of following Christ. We must forgive others, just as our Father has forgiven us.

Luke 6:27-36 (NIV):
 
“But to you who are listening I say: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone slaps you on one cheek, turn
to them the other also. If someone takes your coat, do not withhold your shirt from them. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to
others as you would have them do to you. “If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who are good to you, what credit is that to you? Even sinners do that. And if you lend to those from whom you expect repayment, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners, expecting to be repaid in full. But love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back. Then your reward will be great, and
you will be children of the Most High, because he is kind to the ungrateful and wicked. Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful.”
Be a trained leader to minister to the world like Ruth at CLI