Life by The Word

The Jailer

a poem about forgiveness.

by Monika Langguth

Origonal post available here:


I chose a soul not to release

For he had caused me pain,

And yet my soul did not have peace

But wrapped itself in chain.


I have the right not to forgive

For this one did me wrong

And by my choice I, too, would live

And drag this chain along.


The chain grew longer every day

The weight I could not bear

And though I tried to pull away

The chain was always there.


Yet still I felt it was my right

To hold one in this cell

The chain around my heart grew tight

In my created hell.


Remembering the written word

Forgiveness is a choice

I thought forgive?  that is absurd

But then I heard a voice.


I forgave your past . . . didn’t I?

Yes. . . all your dirty sins

If forgiveness you deny

You’ll find that no one wins.


You’ve locked a soul within a cell

A jailer you’ve become

And so you too are in your hell

For you must hold the one...

That you have chosen to refuse

To set free from his debt

And so in truth you really lose

Because you will not let...

The debtor go. . .set this soul free

Forgive this person’s debt

Unlock the cell now with your key

And freedom you will get.


That was the day I was set free

From my own selfish pride

I threw away my jailer’s key

And opened the cell wide


For who am I to hold a grudge

And not let one go free

For God alone each man will judge

And He can, too, judge me


I learned to put someone in jail

The jailer stays there too

Forgive and let love be the bail

For that soul and for you.


Forgiveness really sets one free

Someday it might be you

So jailer, throw away the key

And you will be free, too.


- Monika Langguth