West End United Methodist Church

Forgiveness Is Not What You Think

Speakers:Tammy Lewis Wilborn
Topics:Holy communion, Sunday service

On the Second Sunday of Easter, our Congregational Care Intern, Dr. Tammy Lewis Wilborn, delivers the Communion Meditation, based on the passage from Genesis 45 where Joseph’s brothers have come to Egypt during the famine to seek food.  Unbeknownst to them, he is the one from the Egyptian administration who meets with them – they are his brothers who sold him into slavery and told their father he had died.  In this scene, Joseph confronts them but with forgiveness.  Dr. Wilborn says that forgiveness is complicated because its “is-ness” is confusing.  We think of Jesus as a model for forgiveness, but she gives examples (like the turning over of the tables in the temple) where we’re not so sure.  We feel like suffering requires forgiveness, but sometimes we blame our own suffering on God.  In our day and time we now understand that one who forgives receives much mental health benefit in that process.  And, looking at this example of Joseph with his brothers, he didn’t “forget,” but pointed out that they are the ones who had sold him into slavery.  But his actions dictate the end of the story, and they demonstrate that with God’s guidance, we, too, can dictate the end of a situation that elicits our forgiveness.   Forgiveness is complicated.     (NOTE: Reflecting the importance of the Word, the video begins with the scripture, but once it starts you can scroll back to the beginning of the service if you want.  The entire service is videoed.)


  • Genesis :45:1-8


Early Service Bulletin (4/7/2024)

Late Service Bulletin (4/7/2024)


Forgiveness Is Not What You Think (scripture and Communion Meditation, April 7, 2024)