Charity Gibson: Forgiving Her Abductors
By Rob Hull
The 700 Club
“It was a constant burden,” Charity Gibson recalls. “Something was about to happen and couldn’t tell what. Had no idea. Just knew that whatever it was, God was trying to warn me.”
When Charity Gibson arrived home from her college classes one day, she couldn’t shake the feeling, so she prayed for God to help her. “I turned the car off, finished my prayer, and when I said, ‘Amen,’ the Lord spoke to my heart,” says Charity. “And he said, ‘Look up.’ And when I looked up, in my rearview mirror, I saw this gentleman approaching my car.”
“I had heard some police detectives speak before and they had said that if you are forced into a vehicle, if somebody’s willing to kidnap you, chances are they’re going to kill you. And so I did not want my vehicle to become my prison.”
“When I got out of the car, I had my back to him, and when I turned around, he had a gun on me. And he began yelling, he said, ‘Give me your f-ing purse.’ I just raised my hands and said, ‘I don’t have a purse.’ So at that point, he walked up and he stuck the gun in my lower stomach and he took my cellphone and my keys and he popped the trunk.”
“I thought, ‘Oh God, why would he pop the trunk unless he’s going to kidnap me?’ I’m thinking, ‘You get into the vehicle, you’re dead, you’re dead, you’re dead!’ It was very surreal. And at the same time the Lord was speaking to my heart and saying, ‘You’ve got a trunk release.’”
“I was going to fight him with anything that I could. And as I went by about to act on this plan, the Lord spoke to my heart in a very firm, powerful way and said, ‘Don’t do it.’ So I climbed into the trunk and I’m laying there looking up at my captor, and he looks down at me and gives me a little smirk and says, ‘Don’t f-n move and don’t make a noise. I don’t want to hurt you, okay?’”
“I put my hand on the trunk release. I start to pull ever so slightly and again, the Lord stopped me. I really felt like God was with me even in the trunk, and so I stopped pulling on the trunk release and I started thinking of the scenarios, ‘What would happen if I’d pulled the trunk release at that time?’ Everything ended in me getting shot and killed unless I waited on him to start down the road.”
Charity continued to pray--this time that God would tell her the right moment to escape. “When I felt him slow down, I pulled the trunk release. But I kept the trunk kinda closed,” Charity remembers. “And I had forgotten that a sound goes off in my car. And when the sound went off in my car, he hits the gas and I pushed open the trunk and jumped out.”
Charity saw another car coming up behind her. “I felt the Lord speak to my heart and said, ‘This car is in league with him.’ And the two accomplices were in that car. I took off running down the side of the road and I remember looking back as I’m running and I see him tapping the brakes, and I thought, ‘Oh God, what’s going to keep him from turning around and coming back and shooting me?’”
I started running through people’s yards, in between their vehicles, anything that put a distance and objects between me and them,” Charity says. “I didn’t want to be an easy target. And I beat on doors until someone came and went in and called 911.”
Police responded immediately, but they didn’t know if they would be able to catch the suspects or get Charity’s car back. Charity remembers what was foremost in her mind at the time. “I didn’t want this to happen to anybody else, and so I was praying that the Lord would allow them to get caught.”
The next day, all three suspects were arrested. When the case went to trial and their sentences were being decided, Charity made a decision of her own. “I felt God was calling me to forgive,” she says. “Forgiveness isn’t something that ‘Oh, I’m going to build up to. One day, you know, I’ll get over this, and one day…’ --It’s not like that. Forgiveness is a decision. You forgive. You just do it.”
Charity forgave her attacker and his accomplices. Her assailant was sentenced to 10 years in jail and 5 years probation. His accomplices were sentenced to 2 years in jail and probation.
“If I had listened to myself what I was planning on doing that day, instead of listening to the Lord then I definitely don’t think I would be sitting here,” Charity declares. “Pray and trust God. It might not turn out the way that you want, but believe God that He can do what He said that He can do, because He can.”
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