Sermon Illustrations

Some years ago, two teenagers with a long history of crime and delinquency robbed a YMCA in New York City. On the way out they saw a young man at the telephone switchboard.

In their panic they assumed he was calling the police. They grabbed him and beat him savagely with brass knuckles and a steel rod. Thinking that he was dead, they hid him behind a radiator near the swimming pool and escaped. While he survived, Donald lost an eye because of the attack

The two teenagers were apprehended and brought to trial. Their past records assured that both would get long sentences but at the trial, Donald did an amazing thing; he requested that the judge allow the two young men to be paroled to his charge. He wanted to give them another chance because he believed they could change.

One of the boys blew his opportunity. He committed another crime, was caught and sent to jail. The other boy, however, was responsive to Donald’s kindness. He went to college and then, eventually, to medical school. He became one of America’s leading surgeons, an eye surgeon, nonetheless..

A reporter, writing about Donald‘s amazing story of forgiveness, said of the surgeon’s accomplishments: “I wonder if he ever performs one of those delicate eye operations without thinking of that night in the YMCA and the young man whose confidence and forgiveness changed his life”