The other day during lunch I watched the last episode of one of my favorite TV series of all time Magnum P.I. Over the past few years I have watch through the entire series as my children gave me the entire series, year-by-year, on DVD. It has been a wonderful present but usually when I watch them and especially when I watch the “last Magnum” – as it became known in our family – I struggle in guilt and end up rejoicing in the glory of forgivenenss.
My wonderful son Davie, who lives in Austin, Texas, went in with his brother and sister about 10 years ago to give me the first season. They followed up year by year until all eight seasons were on our shelf. These gifts were a great delight for me but also a sad reminder. Magnum went off the air in 1988 when Davie was only 6 but somewhere along the line in a few years he began to learn how to work the VCR (remember those?). I went in one night to watch the “last Magnum” and found to my dismay it had been replaced by Pinky and the Brain or some other such cartoon that Davie greatly loved. Well ends up dad enters a shouting fit about “taping over the last Magnum” and Davie feels terrible and remembers it for all those years.
You look back and think “Why didn’t I understand it is just a stupid TV show”. But so often we say things to our family members – the people we love the most -that we would never say to our closest friends. But the other end of the spectrum is also true. Forgiveness by family members is often the best and sweetest. My son forgave me for my sinful rant against him. He did not give me the Magnum DVDs to buy my affections but as a way to say I’m sorry and I love you. The truth is that when we sin against friends and acquaintances and they forgive us it is like a taste of heaven. But when those whom we sin against the most, the ones we love the most, our family members, they forgive and forgive and forgive again and it is like a foretaste of the wedding feast of the lamb.
So on Thanksgiving I gave thanks for my wonderful wife and 3 wonderful children. I was glad that my fabulous son Andrew was home but I will deeply long to have Davie and Bethany here so we could eat turkey together and maybe, just maybe watch the “last Magnum” together and laugh at over the “folly” of our sin and rejoice together in the joy of forgiving each other.