At Senator Hubert Humphrey’s funeral, seated next to his wife was his long-time political rival, disgraced by Watergate, Richard M. Nixon. Humphrey had personally asked Nixon to have that seat of honor at his funeral. Just a few days before Humphrey passed away, he was visited by the Reverend Jesse Jackson in the hospital. Humphrey had called Nixon from his deathbed. Jackson was puzzled and couldn’t help but ask him why he called President Nixon.
The Reverend Mark H. Creech reports that this is what Humphrey had to say to Jesse:
“Jesse, from this vantage point, with the sun setting in my life, all the speeches, the political conventions, the crowds and the great fights are behind me now. At a time like this you are forced to deal with your irreducible essence, forced to grapple with that which is really important to you. And what I have concluded about life, when all is said and done is that we must forgive each other, and redeem each other and move on.”
As we start the New Year, let us be kind to one another and forgiving of each other. Let our New Year’s resolution be to forgive. Don’t wait till your deathbed.