Bottom Line - April 2017
A letter from Stan Bower to the businessmen in the St. Louis region:
The first conscientious objector to receive the Congressional Medal of Honor for actions above and beyond the call of duty was Desmond Doss. Doss served as an Army combat medic in WWII. His story is told in the film, Hacksaw Ridge, which was directed by Mel Gibson. This is an incredible story of a man who held on to his convictions – even in the middle of horrific circumstances.
One of the story lines centers on the relationship between Desmond and his father, a WWI veteran who suffered from both PTSD and alcoholism. Desmond and his mother were often the recipients of abuse from his father.
A particular scene which captured my heart was when Doss’s father went to bat for him while Doss was in the process of being court-martialed by the military court. The father saved the day with a letter from his former captain, who was now a general in the Army.
An emotional mix of great joy mingled with intense sadness gripped my heart as the scene played out. Oh, how I missed my Dad. I felt the deep wounds of our relationship as I remembered some of the very hurtful things I had said about him in front of close friends and family. I cried out to God and asked Him to forgive me for the bad things I had said. My pain was profound. I wept through the scene, and then made emotional and spiritual restitution to God and to my Dad, whom I believe is in heaven today. My heart was healed more than it was before. Getting rid of the true guilt was critical.
Forgiveness is powerfully transformational. I am now freer to love my wife, family and others. I encourage you to take that first step toward setting a relationship right in your own life, if you have one that is broken and in need of care.
Yes, this is digging deep into the pit of guilt, but guess what? Jesus has the ultimate answer to our guilt and unforgiveness. He paid the price we can never pay and now sits at the right hand of the Father, with all power and authority over all creation.
Remember why we celebrate Easter,
Stanley A. Bower