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Jim McGuiggan got on an airplane and headed to his seat, 15A. There was a man sitting in 15A, and the man’s wife was next to him. McGuiggan said, “I hate to trouble you, but you’re in my seat.” The man responded, “Take the seat in front of me.” McGuiggan said, “I’d be glad to do that but when the person comes looking for that seat, I’ll have to get up and disturb him.” To which the man responded, “Sure, the plane’s nearly empty!” Finally the man in 15A reached a boiling point. He flung his clothes in the aisle, tugged his luggage out from under the seat, threw it in the aisle, climbed over his wife, and muttered words of anger. McGuiggan climbed past the man’s wife and slunk down into his seat.

But the man’s wife was still upset. She kept on ranting about McGuiggan being a troublemaker and how he could have taken the other seat. Then she said, “The seat you’re in is my husband’s, anyway!” McGuiggan finally had enough. He said, “No, lady, the seat isn’t your husband’s, it’s mine, see?” He held up the ticket out of his pocket. “15A!” Then came the hammer blow as the woman announced, “This isn’t 15A!” McGuiggan’s heart jumped. He started having chest pains. He looked up and in horror realized he was in 16A. It was her husband’s seat. The seat they kept telling him to take and which he kept refusing was his seat.

Mcguiggan said apologetically, “Lady, what am I going to say to you? I’m so sorry.” She snapped back, “You oughta be!” McGuiggan dragged out his briefcase, dropped it over the seat, climbed out, and slithered down into 15A. But the woman kept berating him. She worked him over about his stupidity and his troublemaking. McGuiggan felt like crying.

Some people think God is like that. That God keeps beating us up over our wrongs. That He relentlessly beats us down until we feel like nobodies. But the bible says, God isn’t like that!

He will not drag you thru the wringer. He won’t keep on stabbing your shamed heart. He turns you loose! He forgives you! When God forgives you, he doesn’t remember your sins anymore!

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