But if you suffer for doing good . . . , this is commendable before God. (2:20 NIV)
Construction of the Tzeltal Bible School in Chiapas began in the early-1960s. A Tzeltal carpenter, Martin Gomez, accepted our invitation to help with the construction. He worked so enthusiastically and so well that he was urged to continue to serve at the Bible School. He learned to drive the jeep and the tractor, and did the agricultural work. He taught carpentry and became the Bible School administrator.
Twenty years later, misled by a false accusation, the church leaders asked Martin to leave the Bible Center. Understandably, Martin became very bitter.
However, one day I met Martin on the trail, and things had changed. He said to me, “I have been very angry and bitter because the church leaders judged me unfairly. But I have been thinking about the prophets and other men of God in the Bible. None of them had an easy life on earth. John the Baptist was put in jail and beheaded for pointing out Herod’s sin. Daniel was put in the lions’ den because of walking close to the Lord. Look at Christ, it was the church leaders of that day who put him to death!”
From then on, the bitterness in Martin’s heart was gone. He had forgiven those who had wronged him and had moved on. —Helen Hofman
As you pray, ask God to help you forgive those who have wronged you.
About the Author
Helen Hofman is a retired missionary. She and her husband Sam worked with the Tzeltal and Tojolabal Indians of Chiapas, Mexico for more than forty years. In their work, they helped set up a Bible School to train the Tzeltals, taught in the Bible School, prepared Sunday School materials, textbooks, hymnals and audiovisuals. They also coordinated the translation of the Amatenango Tzeltal New Testament and the revision of the highland Tzeltal Bible.