He could have killed him. In fact, he almost did. It was a terrible accident.
Jack Keith was driving along the Pacific Coast Highway one morning during the Memorial Day weekend last year. He was admiring the waves of the Pacific Ocean momentarily when suddenly his truck hit something.
Keith’s truck had drifted into the bike lane and struck a cyclist, Tom Sovilla.
“It all happened so quickly. I looked up and boom; I just saw him flying through the air,” Keith told Fox News.
Keith feared the worst for Sovilla. He immediately pulled over and called 911. Two doctors who were also cycling stopped to help Sovilla until emergency personnel arrived. “When people were tending to him, I never saw him regain consciousness; I never saw him move a muscle. I thought he was paralyzed,” said Keith.
When Sovilla was evaluated at the hospital, he was found to have a fractured back, broken pelvis, torn knee ligaments and bruised intestines. He also suffered from two blood clots on his brain.
Keith was extremely troubled about the accident and Sovilla’s well-being. He tried in vain to get information about Sovilla’s condition from the hospital and the police department. He contacted one of the witnesses who relayed a message to Sovilla’s wife, Jenette. Keith was shocked when Jenette reached out to him five days following the incident.
“She texted me on my lunch break saying, ‘Hey, this is Jenette, Tom’s wife, the guy who was involved in the accident. He is going to be alright — we’ve been praying for you,'” said Keith.
A few days later, Jenette invited Keith to come to the hospital to visit Sovilla. Keith was nervous and unsure, but he went, wanting to do the right thing.
Keith was shocked by the reception that Sovilla and his family gave him. “I was blown away that they were OK with me being there and that they were worried about me. It was a nice start to the healing process.”
An unlikely friendship was formed.
Sovilla has been asked how he and his family could forgive Keith. Sovilla responded “holding on to things just eats away at you.” “It doesn’t necessarily hurt the other person,” he continued. “I think if people can understand that, then people would learn to forgive
because forgiveness is a big part [of] your own mental and physical health.” Jenette Sovilla echoed her husband’s sentiment: “We could live our lives angry and bitter about lots of things that have happened to us,” she said. “Why? It doesn’t help anything.”
Keith is overwhelmed. “I’ve felt nothing but love from this man — and for the situation, that’s unheard of.”
Our sins caused the death of Jesus Christ (1 Corinthians 15:1-4). He was crucified, not for His own sins, but for ours. We are the offenders; He is the offended One. But He loved us so much that He gave His life for us so that we could live (Romans 5:8). Jesus’ death on the cross satisfied the justice of God against sin and is the means for our
forgiveness. “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace” (Ephesians 1:7).
Why did God send His Son to die for us? Why did Jesus give His life for us so that we might live? The reason is “nothing but love.” Read John 3:16; 15:13.
God will save and give eternal life to those who place their faith and trust in Jesus (Acts 16:30-31), turn from their sins in repentance (Acts 17:30-31), confess Jesus before men (Romans 10:9-10), and are baptized (immersed) into Christ for the forgiveness of sins (Acts 2:38). He will continue to cleanse from sin those who continue to walk in the light of
His Word (1 John 1:7-9).
How will you respond to His love? Won’t you accept it and reciprocate it through your trusting obedience?
— David A. Sargent
* Information gleaned from “California cyclist hit by truck, nearly killed, befriends driver who hit him: Bitterness ‘doesn’t help anything'” by Madeline Farber, www.foxnews.com .
David A. Sargent,
Church of Christ at Creekwood
1901 Schillinger Rd. S. Mobile, Alabama 36695