Friday, July 08, 2011
Casey Anthony and Angry Church Folks
“Dear Casey Anthony, God will deal with you. Good luck finding a lawyer that will help you lie to Him.”
"There is a special place in Hell for you, Casey."
Surely I am not the only one who is disturbed to hear or read Christians hurling judgment in anybody’s direction. Is this what we should do?
A recent column from J. Lee Grady said, "But in the end, people who follow Christ should not be grabbing pitchforks and demanding vigilante justice just because a trial didn’t turn out the way we thought it should. Our response should be tempered with redemption."
Have we forgotten that Jesus said he did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance (Luke 5:32)? Have we forgotten his words to the religious individuals who brought a woman caught in adultery to him? "Let the one who is without sin cast the first stone" (John 8:7)? Or Romans 3:23 which reminds us that ALL have sinned?
If we truly know the forgiveness of Christ, how can we rejoice that someone else will"get what's coming to them"? Our attitude should be guided by Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ has forgiven you." If I understand that I am not righteous, I can hope that others find forgiveness and peace. Is that not the Good News, after all?
One thing I know, God's love is not just for the "good" people. Sometimes I wonder if those who are the loudest in condemning Casey to God's wrath are not, as Shakespeare said (paraphrased) protesting a bit too much?
Will you join me in praying for Casey and for her fractured family? It is certain that God loves them--flaws, sins and all--and they desperately need God.
And will you also join me in a prayer for the abused children whose stories do not make the headlines? One organization involved in abuse prevention has said that every 10 seconds a case of child abuse is reported. Think of the unreported ones...the little ones who are, even now, afraid. Let's stop minimizing abuse, especially in the church, and let's be vigilant in in addressing child abuse in all its forms. Let's make sure we are aware and careful and loving toward children around us. Let's stop all the rhetoric and do something constructive with our frustration. And let's be known as people of grace and mercy. Let's put down the stones.