Forgive. That was what I said while taking the picture below. I said it because no relationship, marriage, family, community or even a country can thrive if forgiveness is not embodied as a way of life as it’s so easy for us to offend one another. Sometimes, we even offend others without knowing and others do to us without them knowing.
But instead of thinking about what someone said or didn’t say or what someone did or didn’t do, we should choose to forgive even when they don’t apologize. It has been said that to forgive is divine, but humans too have the capability to forgive because the spirit of God is in them.
Nelson Mandela is one person in modern history that revealed our capacity to forgive evil done against us. Mandela who was jailed for 27 years by the apartheid government once said, ‘Forgiveness liberates the soul. It removes fear. That is why it is such a powerful weapon.” We need this weapon more than ever especially in this period when George Floyd’s death continues to reverberate around the world. Africans are remembering one of the worst world’s human rights violation – Transatlantic slave trade and also the reality of systemic racism.
In Belgian city of Antwerp, the statue of late King Leopold 11 who reigned over the mass death of 10 million Congolese was removed likewise in Bristol where statue of a slave trader, Edward Colston was removed and thrown into harbour. Thousands also did march to remove Cecil Rhodes statue.
For the first time, I learnt that Winston Churchill was not a great leader after all but a racist who along with Cecil Rhodes and Jan Smuts created apartheid in South Africa. His statue was defaced.
However, no matter how serious offences against us are including those of the penultimate colonialists, we should forgive but at the same time continue to demand for justice, equality and total emancipation for Africans all over the world.
“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Scripture