Striving to create a home strong in the foundations of love, respect, and God's truths ...

Monday, May 14, 2012

GratiTuesday - A Letter to a Thief

Dear Thief,

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:

Glass everywhere.

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.

My Bible.

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

 For more GratiTuesday, visit Heavenly Homemakers.


  1. Oh my. I'm so glad you weren't in the van when this happened. It's frightening enough to think that someone would do this in the first place, but I like the way you handled it. Most likely the person thought you'd left your purse outside, but I hope they do read the bible they found. Isn't it wonderful though, how God takes care of us, even in ways such as a new bible coming in just before the old one was taken from you?

    1. I'm glad that we weren't there, either! The glass was spread so far away that the window must've been hit incredibly hard to do so much damage. The bag my Bible was in IS a pocketbook, but it was unzipped on top with my Bible and bookmarks poking out the top, so it was obvious that those things were in there. We covered up other things we thought could be tempting, but I wasn't worried about my Bible. I won't make that mistake again!

  2. What a horrible thing to happen! But you handled it beautifully. I certainly hope that thief does learn something from his loot.

    1. Thanks, Mandi! We drove around for a while, hoping that my bag - or at least the Bible - would've been tossed somewhere we could find it when they realized that there wasn't money inside, but we never found it. I hope it gets read, wherever it ends up ultimately!

  3. I really admire the way you are dealing with this, it is a good example to all of us who read your blog. Let me just leave it at, this was not my reaction when any of our cars were broken in to, though it should have been. I'm glad you guys were no where near the car when that happened.

    1. My first reaction was to cry! I hate losing that Bible, but I can't change what happened - only the way I reacted to it, and I could feel the kids watching me the whole time. Ultimately, I'm just glad that we weren't there.

  4. This happened to us years ago on a trip to Canada. They took my husband's laptop bag. What frustrated me most was that you could see we had carseats in the car, and still they shattered the window and got glass all over my children's seat. The police recovered the bag with everything in it except for the laptop, though. Glad you all are okay, and I know how it feels.

    1. My husband spent hours vacuuming, trying to get every last bit of glass gone. He told us to make sure we had everything covered before we got out of the car - but I never thought anybody would steal my Bible! I'm glad you understand - but I'm sorry that it happened to you, too.

  5. How sad to have your Mother's Day interrupted in such a way. Like the other commenters here have, please allow me to say that I, too, admire the way you're responding! I fear I would struggle and respond in less than a godly way. Thanks for sharing and a belated happy Mother's day to you. :)

    ~Lisa @ HappyinDoleValley