I'd love to call you something else, but I know you from only one violent act. One act that completely changed our day. I hope that act changes all the rest of yours.
My Mother's Day began like many others probably did. Flowers from the kids and breakfast made by my husband. Worshipping in church with my family, and then packing and heading out for dinner together and a day of hiking and baseball at a park.
I agonized over which restaurant to choose. I wanted us all to have fun, to eat healthy food, to have a memorable experience together.
You definitely gave us memorable, for when we returned to our car following the very last bite, arms happily loaded with puzzles and sunglasses given out by the wait staff to the kids, we saw this:
Looking further, we saw:
In the car, out of the car, halfway back through the minivan, noticeably not in the window.
Suddenly it occurred to us to see what was missing, and despite the fact that there were a few dollars in the center console, nice sunglasses, the Sunday paper, etc., only one thing was missing.
My Bible bag.
Maybe you thought that bag was something special. I doubt that you'll think so, but it is to me. My husband and I shopped for it at Kohls' on a date. We picked out the bright green-and-blue paisley print because it was cheerful and had lots of pockets. I needed to put lots of stuff in that bag - stuff like Tic-tacs, highlighters, pens, tissues, and lip gloss. It was to be the bag that I would carry in to church and Bible study each week.
So along with all of that small stuff, and a raggedy stash of old bulletins, there was only one other thing in that bag, and I doubt that you found this item financially beneficial, either.
The study Bible that my husband bought for me shortly after we were married.
The first Bible that I managed to read every day.
The Bible where I made notes during several women's conferences, during Sunday School and church services, during my morning quiet times with Jesus.
That's the Bible you took.
There was nothing in the car that you could have taken that would have upset me more.
Fortunately, my most important stuff wasn't in the car.
The kids were safely inside the restaurant, sharing a Baby Blossom and yeasty rolls with me, and they didn't sustain so much as a nick from a shard of glass.
My husband traded bites of steak and chicken with me, amazed that our Big Helper now likes fried onions, tucked away from your weapon of choice.
That same man worked for hours to clean all the shards of the car, bleeding from cuts on unseen glass, giving up a day of baseball with his family to make sure we had a safe vehicle in which to ride. From cleaning and vacuuming over and over to scrubbing down even all of the hard surfaces inside, my car is now safe again - and it's never been so clean.
You scared my children, and that's rough - but after realizing that they were safe, they wanted to know about you: about why you would want to hurt us, why you would take my Bible, about whether you would ask Jesus to forgive you, about what makes you do bad things.
We had a great conversation about all of those hard questions, and they grew up a little bit Sunday. In ways that no five- and seven-year-old should have to.
We talked about Romans 8:28: "And we know that God causes everything to work together[a] for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them."
My Big Helper asked if you knew that verse.
It's underlined for you. I'd love for you to read it. The book that you took will totally change your life if you let it. Please read it.
I'd love for you to give the Bible back if you're not going to read it, but I'm pretty sure that's not going to happen. See, that verse above? It's already proven true in lots of ways, including one that I didn't understand until yesterday.
God sent me a new study Bible a few weeks ago.
When it came in the mail, I thought it just an extra blessing; after all, it is the same translation as the chronological daily Bible that I read every day. How convenient this would be!
But apparently God had other plans for both of these Bibles.
So now I'm getting ready to break in the new one.
I hope you're finding your way around my old one.
A Nest in the Rocks
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