Come - Message to a Thief
Come - Message To A Thief
A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of. The Message
I’m betting that you noticed the website address on the side of the camper you vandalized in New Jersey. I’m praying that you got curious enough to look up the website.
I have to admit that you caused me to momentarily forget my mission. Poor Halleluiah (my camper) had stood lonely in a New Jersey hotel parking lot for three days so I’m not really sure what day you violated him. Bill (my nephew) and I had such a great time visiting New York City. What a mix of fun, the arts, patriotism, worship, and evangelism. When I went to the camper to use Tommy (my GPS system,) I was confused when he wasn’t in the glove box.
“Where did you leave Tommy?” Bill asked.
“In the glove box,” I responded. “Why is it open?”
Then it dawned on me that you’d been inside my home. How dare you!
Strangely enough, my first reaction was curiosity. I wanted to know how you got in. Bill and I briefly wondered if we’d left a door unlocked.
“Bill,” I asked. “Did you lock the camper when you got your sunglasses out?”
“Absolutely,” he said.
“Well,” I said. “I locked it when I went inside last night. I know I did because I was afraid I’d forgotten so I walked back to check. I do remember wondering why the driver’s door wasn’t completely closed.”
Bill and I looked at each other, jumped out of Halleluiah, and ran around to the driver’s side. Sure enough, you’d drilled a hole in the keyhole.
My second reaction was admiration. You are obviously a professional and equipped with the right tools. By the way, when you cut the wires to my alarm system, we appreciate your putting duct tape around one of the wires. The police officers said that if you hadn’t done that, it would have shorted out our entire system. You don’t often run into a considerate thief. Even if you don’t want to admit it, there is a tiny bit of good in you.
Then I just got sick. I felt violated. I grieved the piece of equipment that talked to me through so many states. I’d named him and he will make his way into one of my books. The alarm system was brand new and I felt like I’d wasted my money. I didn’t like it that you’d sat in the seat where I’ll probably drive 25,000 miles this year. Halleluiah is holy ground. It carries me on my mission journeys, is where I worship each day, and where I pray for people like you. For a brief moment, my faith slipped and I wondered if it was spoiled.
Then I felt fear. What else had you stolen or done? I’m not sure I know the answer to that yet. I keep finding evidence of things you took, touched, or broke. I can tell you tried to steal the DVD player because the corners of the shelf were busted. Since it was bolted down, you tried to remove the entire shelf. I couldn’t get it out either so I guess I should send a thank you note to RoadTrek. I discovered tonight that you took my phone cord. I didn’t realize until today how much damage you’d actually done to the driver’s side door. You went through the shelf above the dashboard but for the life of me, I can’t think of anything missing from there. Shoot me an e-mail and remind me. I’m sure I’ll find more stuff damaged or missing.
When I realized the car door was so damaged, I just felt anger. It looks as if you used a crow bar on it. Since you had the tools to drill out the lock, why was it necessary to damage Halleluiah’s beautiful body? It just seemed wasteful. My admiration for you disappeared.
I have a tiny confession to make. When I saw you had opened the packet of what looked like money and realized that the realistic looking play money actually contained the plan of salvation, I felt some satisfaction knowing you must have been disappointed. I hope you actually took one of those. If not, call me and I’ll mail you one.
It wasn’t until my friend and publicist, Gail Golden called me that I finally felt the emotion God wanted me to feel. When Gail realized how burdened I was by everything, she began praying with me. She prayed for my heaviness of spirit to be lifted. Her prayer bound the power of Satan. She thanked God for having such wonderful things planned for the 2007 missionary journey that Satan would bother to send you to do his bidding. She prayed for the rest of the journey and for us to be able to find places to repair Halleluiah. As she prayed, I began to feel love and compassion for you.
So my dear dear thief - I want to tell you that you are one of the reasons God has sent me on these journeys across America. I am burdened for you. I love you and I forgive you for what you did. The darkness that makes you steal is from Satan. When the Bible uses the word thief, it is usually referring to Satan. Satan’s motive is to make you miserable and steal your life. He is the ultimate thief and you are his victim.
When Jesus lay dying on the cross for you and me, there were two criminals on the cross next to him. One chose to allow the ultimate thief to steal his eternity. The other chose Jesus. Both criminals died that day but one is in paradise.
God loved you enough to die for you. Nothing you have done is too big for God to forgive and forget. You can start new right now by coming to Jesus. All you have to do is confess to Him that you are a sinner and invite him into your life.
I beg you to pray words like, “Jesus, I am thief. I have hurt you by hurting others. I come to you today confessing my past. I want a future – one that includes life, love, and happiness. I believe that you lived, died on the cross, and rose from the dead. I invite you into my life.” Jesus instantly forgave the criminal on the cross and He will instantly forgive you.
Once you pray that prayer, I have some suggestions. Get as far away from that neighborhood and your friends as is possible. God will provide a way for you to escape. Find a good Christian church and throw yourself into study and service. Fill up those dark places in your mind with reading the word of God and doing good for others. When you stumble, don’t get discouraged – just apologize to God and to anyone you hurt. Get up every morning, ask for knowledge of God’s will for you and the power to carry it out. God will answer that prayer.
I feel so much hope for you. I sense you are going to read this. I felt driven to write this immediately. Since I know your occupation, I’m sure you have a computer. It was no accident that you robbed the Pocket Full of Quarters van. You were my assignment and teacher for the day. God certainly must love us both a lot. For the record, if I thought it would help you find God, I would give you everything in Halleluiah and sing Halleluiah while I was doing it. God bless. Every time I see the duct tape holding my door together, I’m going to pray for you. If you read this, send me an e-mail. I promise not to try to trace it.
The Pocket Full of Quarter’s Lady
PS - To see the pictures of poor Halleluiah – Go to the photo gallery and look in the file marked New Jersey – North Bergen – Poor Halleluiah.