Forgiveness is a divine virtue that the Bible emphatically promulgates, and it’s one of the main subjects of Christian author Marlon Godfrey Bacon’s debut tome, “How to Heal Your Heart & Soul.”
“The reason that I wrote the book was because I saw so many people who were suffering, so many people were injured on a spiritual level, as well as on a psychological level,” said Bacon. “And the fact that we are dichotomous individuals, we’re spiritual beings in physical form, I saw the injury and the hurt on both levels, and I thought it was about time that a book was written to get people to understand what they’re going through, why they’re going through it, and how it effects them on a spiritual level as well as on the psychological level.”
Bacon, 46, attended secondary school in Camden, N.J. and graduated from Berean Institute with a para legal certificate. He attended Community College of Philadelphia, and graduated with a master’s degree in Human Services from Lincoln University. He said it took 8-9 months to write his book.
Bacon admits that he was a church boy. “I grew up in the church,” said Bacon, who attends Bible Ministry Fellowship, 425 East Chelten Ave. where Bishop Shirley A. Ross is the senior pastor.
Reflecting on his own pain and self-forgiveness, Bacon said, “I started identifying a lot of hurt and pain in my life had come from things that happened to me as a child. And as a child, what we do is, if we don’t have some form of therapy, play therapy, or even someone [we] can to talk to…we operate under that hurt and sometimes what we end up doing is, we draw closer to that hurt, as oppose to understanding and identifying why it happened, when it happened and then how to alleviate what has happened.”
Bacon recalls abuse by family members, and cites the stinging pain and disappointment of his girlfriend cheating on him with his best friend. He admits he was incensed and wanted to inflict revenge and punishment on his best friend, but eventually grew to truly forgive both for their infidelity and betrayal.
According to the International Forgiveness Institute, “The act of forgiveness does not suggest you have forgotten the injustice. Nor does it imply you condone or excuse the wrongdoer…When you forgive someone who has deeply hurt you, you let go of resentment and the urge to seek revenge, no matter how deserving of these things the wrongdoer may be.”
Some of Bacon’s inspiration to write his book is rooted in his personal “bad relationships, abuse as a child, and problems associated with socio-economic status.” His book has eight chapters, and some of his chapter titles include:
- Knowing Yourself
- Drama Syndrome
Bacon said his book is for anyone interested in healing, adding that it includes psychological and Biblical scripture.
“By reading this book, my hope is that you’ll receive the message, that’s not truly my message, but the message of Christ,” he said. “So that way we stop being separate and we start learning how to come together. We start learning how to understand one another and also forgive one another, and then grow; [to] get back to a place where we are stronger, that we are happier, that we are motivated for living.”
Bacon said too many people who are dying, incarcerated, on drugs, have broken families because they are hurt, “but no one took the time to talk to them, to minister to them, to evangelize, and my book is my way of evangelizing, as well as my street evangelism,” he said.
Bacon’s book offers a few practical steps for forgiving others:
- validate your hurt
- grow to a point to talk to the person that hurt you to communicate your feelings
- forgive yourself
- enjoy your liberated life.
“Heal and move forward,” said Bacon. “If I may say, just like any great man in the Bible that had a fall, it’s not how you fall and lay there, it’s how you get up and recover from the fall.”