Today on Freedom Friday with Perry and Shawna, Ron Hammer and Phillip Robinson tell the riveting story from their book, Forgiveness in the 1st Degree: The True Story of a Son Whose Father Was Murdered, The Man Who Pulled the Trigger, And the God Who Redeemed Them Both. Phillip is the son whose father was murdered, and Ron is the man who pulled the trigger. Ron had a good life, nice home, and happy marriage. But all that fell into the background when he became addicted to crystal meth. And that drove him to commit the crime that forever changed his land Phillip’s life.
So first, Ron takes us to the night when he pulled the trigger and fled the scene. Then Phillip shares about finding his dad lying in a parking lot. Next, Phillip shares the rage and murderous thoughts he had for his dad’s killer and finally letting it go and choosing to forgive. Then Ron shares about going to prison for life and all the years he denied being the one who pulled the trigger. Next Ron shares about the day he surrendered to Jesus admitting his sin and sending a letter to Phillip’s mom admitting his crime and asking forgiveness.
Then Phillip shares about getting the letter, extending forgiveness to Ron, and the friendship that grew between them as they wrote letters to each other. Next Phillip shares how he and his mom spoke for Ron at his parole hearing. Their testimony led to Phillip’s release. And 30 years after the crime Phillip and Ron met face to face. And finally, when Ron still struggles with the regret and pain of his sin against Phillip’s family, Phillip is the one to remind Ron that he is forgiven! Share this amazing story of redemption!
Perry LaHaie is a radio host, singer, and songwriter with a passion to see the Great Commission completed in our generation. He was born and raised in northern Michigan, earned a degree in communications, and later a graduate degree in cross-cultural communications. Music and ministry have taken him all over the world. He served at Family Life Radio before serving with Frontiers, a worldwide ministry to Muslims. Perry and his wife, Teresa, have two children, Kali and Taylor.
Shawna Beyer has been a business owner, homeschool mom, church planter, project lead for a management consulting company, and church staff member. Born and raised in Southern California, she has been married for 25 years and is the mom of four. Shawna loves to help others discover a personal relationship with God that shapes how they think, feel, and live for Jesus daily. She loves being surrounded by her family and a good cup of coffee.