The murder of Anthony, a young black man in Liverpool stunned the UK. Not just for its ferocity - his head was stove-in by an ice axe - but for its motives. Two young men, Michael Barton and Paul Taylor, murdered him simply because he was black. They were completely unprovoked in their attack, and had clearly planned the deed enough to invest in a weapon prior to hunting him down as he walked home one night with his girlfriend and cousin. I can't find words to describe how this makes me feel.
And yet the horror of this act was blown away by the grace showed by Anthony's mother. Lorna and I were moved to stunned silence as we watched her publicly forgive the two men citing Jesus forgiving his murderers on the cross as her example.
"Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing." And they divided up his clothes by casting lots." Luke 23:34
God's Holy Spirit moving in His people can lead to incredible, radical behaviour. I pray this touched people into thinking anew about God, and I thank God that He's there comforting that family.