Friday, December 7, 2012

A time of infamy (by Judy)

Morning, everyone! I know it has been a long time without a posting, and there is no excuse - except to say that several times over the last few weeks, I thought - Ahhhhh... now that would make a good post! The proddings had to do with the beautiful and unseasonable late fall weather, with this Advent season in church liturgy, with the blessings and challenges of family and friends, with the dreaded fiscal cliff, and with the serious personal and spiritual gaffe that Abraham made in the book of Genesis by urging his Wife Sarai to tell Pharaoh that she was Abraham's half-sister. See - good stuff!

However, as I sit at my computer, it is with serious intent. This morning's Plain Dealer reminded me that today is "the day which will live in infamy" that Franklin Roosevelt spoke about after the bombing of Pearl Harbor 71 years ago. Still-resilient local nonagenarians told their story on the front page, and it made me settle as I read, and think. Then on the front page of the local section, there was an equally troubling story about the arraignment of an 18 year old who walked into school in nearby Chardon and blasted many students, causing death, injury and heartache.

Finally, after reading the news, I turned to my devotional, a book of daily readings written long ago by Charles Spurgeon and updated by my pastor, Alistair Begg. In part, this is what the reading said:
”If you will select for me the grossest specimen of humanity, if he is but born of woman, I will still have hope for him, for Jesus Christ came to seek and save sinners. Pebbles from the brook are turned by grace into jewels for the royal crown. Worthless dross he transforms into pure gold. Redeeming love has set apart many of the worst of mankind to be the reward of the Savior’s passion. Effectual grace calls deep-dyed sinners to sit at the table of mercy, and therefore none of us should despair.”

As I put the book down, my soul was stirred and I knew I must write today to share a long-held conviction - the sad young man from Chardon, and those sitting on death row in our country all share something in common - the possibility of being Jesus' reward for his passion, the chance to be jewels in His royal crown. Given time and the work of the Spirit. As long as we humans refrain from intervening in the name of capital punishment. So there you are - not quite as warm and fuzzy as my previous subject possibilities, but one that perhaps will cause you to muse about this time of infamy when capital punishment is the law of the land!

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