Saturday, January 16, 2010
An Open Letter to some Thieves.
Jan. 16, 2010.
(Back story our church was broken into Sunday Jan. 10th early Monday morning sometime. Also found out a former attender to our church was arrested Thursday, January 7 for robbing a local bank the day before)
I want to applaud you for breaking into our church building this past Sunday night. As you can see we don’t keep much cash around. Fact is you did more damage than the loose change you got. We, (The Church) purposely don’t know keep lots of funds in our building for a reason. Why? Because we believe that the operating expenses of the church isn’t to be sitting around but to be used for the Kingdom of God. As you can tell we’re a simple, poor congregation that wants to serve Jesus. Yet we are rich. (But that’s a sermon in and of itself if you attend I might explain more)
If you needed food, clothes or even money – odds are you could ask.(And probably would of gotten something for your troubles) Your breaking in our congregation did remind us that we are in a Spiritual battle. Thanks for that reminder. You did break an older lady’s heart though by taking some loose change from the Holy Land. It might not mean anything to you or be worth anything … but to her it was one of the last times she went over to the Holy Land with her husband. (Who happens to be one of the first preachers of the church and is now present with the Lord.) Anyways, know we are praying for you. We’re not upset. We had really hoped you took a Bible, but if you need one – let us know …we’ll be glad to give you one.
Dear Bank Robber,
I don’t even know what to say. It was shocking but not surprising to see your name in the paper. Since I’ve been here at this congregation, you only showed up when you needed something. We helped you out. We had food, clothes, and even in the past helped with your bills. You move. I, even was there in the last moments of when your father-in-law was on his death bed, was at the funeral home. Prayed you come more often, be more faithful. But in over a year, you were gone. I always wondered whatever happened. Now I know. You were so desperate, so addicted, so wanting to be valued, loved and accepted.
You attended our services. Our people loved you, prayed for you, hurt for you, and still do. We tried to call, yet you disconnected your number.We tried to visit but you left no address. And now I know where to find you: IN JAIL. My prayer is that this is a wake-up call, that this might be the beginning of you saying “what was I think?” (Because apparently you were not). Know this: Our church still loves you. We’re praying for you. We hurt for you. We want to be Jesus’ hands and feet. My prayer is in the next few days as I visit you … you might know this and Repent and come to know the love of Jesus as I have.
I, too, once was a robber. Maybe didn’t rob a bank but did sin. Robbed sometimes people of their joy. I looked out only for my own interests rather than the interests of others. I’m willing to help you find the Grace that was given for you and to me.
(In another note: this is only the second time I've been robbed in almost 15yrs of ministry - the last time was at Cary though there were some amusing moments when I was at Liberty and Corner House)