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Saturday, July 9, 2011

guilty


I did something yesterday that I have never—and I mean NEVER—done before: I got up at the sound of my FIRST alarm [I set 5-8 alarms every night before going to bed].  My dad even asked me about it during our Walk-and-talk-with-Ellen-from-bottom-of-stairs-to-her-car-and-pick-up-everything-she-drops-or-bowls-over-in-her-wake’ that has become our Friday morning routine since I moved in.  He looked at me like I had something growing out of my head and, in a concerned tone, said, ‘You sure were up early this morning; everything okay?!’  I’m telling you, this was odd.  I have seen 5:00 a.m. many, many times but until today I only knew it at the end of my day, not the beginning.  All I can say is this: I preferred pre grown-up life when 5:00 a.m. meant picking up a Whataburger taquito on my way home to get in bed.

At a loss of what to do with myself during the 1.5 hours I had before needing to leave for work, I decided to have a Quite Time.  I am so glad I did.  Since I usually only have about 1.5 minutes from bed to driver’s seat I have never begun any day with my quiet time.  This morning I chose to use a devotion from our student ministry’s ‘Aftermath’ devotion series.  My goal was to keep up with these devotions after beach retreat but am embarrassed to say that today I had only made it to Week1, Day2.

However, I’m kind of glad that I did get behind as I felt that this particular devotion was very fitting for the week that our country has had.  For the past 33+ days, people all over the nation have watched in disbelief as the horrific details of Casey Anthony’s trial were catapulted and splattered all over every tangible surface of that Florida courtroom.  And 2 days ago, July 6, 2001, Casey Anthony was found ‘Not Guilty’ of murdering her 2-year-old daughter.

At first, I reacted as most people did: angry, disappointed, fearful, saddened.  I thought, ‘How in the world could they NOT convict her?!  Look at her!  She’s obviously so incredibly guilty it’s not even a question…That is so not fair…not a good example…can you imagine how many whacked-out people are now going to think that they, too, can get away with something like this?!...She’ll get what’s coming to her…Why didn’t they dig deeper?...Is the jury really that dumb?!’  

Occasionally those thoughts were interrupted with pity and a genuine sadness for Casey, ‘How is she going to move on with her life?...she’s lost all credibility…everywhere she goes, people will recognize and most likely treat her poorly…she had better watch her back…bringing her family into this…Satan has taken a MAJOR hold of her!’

But after reading the verses and devotion yesterday, my attitude abruptly changed.  I was ashamed at how quick I had been to judge, assume, throw stones, and condemn.  No one will ever know what really happened regarding the death of her precious two-year-old daughter—I don’t even think Casey knows anymore.  There is only One who does and He alone can and will judge her.  In His eyes she is no different—better or worse—than you and me.  No one is exempt from the truth; all have sinned and can never—will never—compare to the glory of God.   Every single one of us is dirty.  Guilty.  Deserving of absolutely nothing.

But...

When accepting Jesus in your life, any and every single guilty charge is dropped.  Our sins are washed completely away and Christ’s purity blankets us so that when we stand before God, all He sees is a heart and soul that have been made new by the blood that his Son bled to cover our sins.  Christ intercedes for us.

That is a beautiful thing!

I hope and pray that someone shares the truth with Casey Anthony.  Could you imagine reaching out to someone like that?  How awesome would that be?!  I pray that she not only hears the truth, but accepts and believes it, too.  In the end, it will not matter two pence if the jury found you guilty or not; it is in that final Courtroom, standing transparent and naked before the throne of God, that you WILL NOT want to hear the words, ‘I never knew you:  GUILTY.’

For, 'Everyone who calls on  the name of the Lord will be saved'
Romans 10:13 

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