The officer from the Crime Scene unit of the N. Richland Hills PD is here at the building right now collecting fingerprints from the glass in Suzanne’s office, from the cabinet behind Josslyn’s desk, and from the doors and desks in mine and Jason’s offices. We’ve learned over the past few hours that the deductible on the insurance is $5,000. And the two computers and my door will bring the total to just under $3,000. So this is all coming directly out of the church’s pocket.
And I’m the preacher.
So I’m supposed to have something really wise to say. I’m supposed to have a profound thought or two on all of this. Eugene Peterson would expect me to use this opportunity to provide spiritual direction. And I’ve been coming up empty all day.
I know I’ve already forgiven the person(s). Goodness knows I’ve done much worse things in my life than what happened here overnight. And my God has forgiven me. So, in light of that, I’ve already forgiven whomever smashed my door and grabbed my computer. Whomever took Brittany’s computer and the cash from Jason’s office and went through his mission trip envelopes, they are already forgiven by me.
I just keep asking myself “why?” I can’t imagine taking the risk for whatever two laptops will bring at a pawn shop. I can’t imagine going into the church building, where God’s people meet together to worship him and minister to each other, a sanctuary, a holy place, consecrated to our Lord and his purposes in his Kingdom, and smashing doors and stealing computers. And the police keep saying, and the evidence all around us keeps pointing, to this being an inside deal. It’s one of our own.
I’m very grateful for the rest of the staff here who have already forgiven the person(s), too. We’re sick about it. But we realize that whomever did this is probably really hurting, starving for love and attention, searching to find his place in a broken world. And that’s what makes me sad. If it really is someone from our own church family, if it really is a brother or a sister of mine, it’s somebody I love who is hurting. And I hate that. I would gladly have just handed them the two or three hundred dollars they felt they needed. I’m praying for them and I’m confident that God is going to use this situation, because of how we’re trying to handle it, to work something good in that person’s life.
Give me another hour or so and I’ll unveil #42 in the countdown to football season. I haven’t forgotten.