About a week ago, my family and I were having a conversation about something having to do with one of the kids and a particular situation — I now cannot even recall what the situation was (sigh) — but I do remember the takeaway. It was “Be the Glue.” Be the glue that holds relationships together, the glue that mends hurt feelings, the glue that bonds friendships to one another and makes all kiddos feel welcome. I am thankful that my kids are pretty good about this, because being the glue is more important to me than a lot of things that take priority in our lives today.
Fast forward to this week, where I have found myself tangled up — reading many articles about the latest story that is spreading like wildfire. The recent news has forced me to move on from what I learned from Harambe to reading about the Stanford swimmer’s horrendous assault on an unconscious young lady — and the insane lack of justice that is being served for this repulsive crime. How does such a criminal and evil act get swept under the carpet, or rather, under the dumpster?! What good can come from this? What is to be learned from this? And then as I was reading The Letter from the VICTIM, her very words answered my question. The Victim herself found good in the midst of her pain…
As the victim closed her 12-page letter to the judge but mainly to her attacker, her words brought yet another flow of tears to my cheeks:
“Most importantly, thank you to the two men who saved me, who I have yet to meet.
I sleep with two bicycles that I drew
taped above my bed to remind myself
there are heroes in this story.
That we are looking out for one another.
To have known all of these people, to have felt
their protection and love, is something
I will never forget.”
Wow. Just wow. This young lady — in the dark, dark aftermath of an event that (while on this earth) will tragically leave her stained — is finding something good in it that she will never forget. Through her pain, she sketched two bicycles, reached up to tape them above her bed… and as she closes her eyes each night, she is hopefully comforted by the good they represent. When I read her beautiful words, my earlier notion of “Be the glue” entered my mind. And then a new mandate joined it:
Be the two bikes.
…Be the guys on the bikes.
Thank the Lord for sending them. We all shudder to think ‘what if’ they had never come? And even then, those Swedish grad students didn’t have to stop. They could have turned a blind eye. But they didn’t…
Earlier this morning I read a poignant open letter written by a father to his four sons, as a response to this ugly story. He offered four points to take from it, and this was his final message in the letter:
“You are warriors.
I didn’t mention it yet, but there were two Swedish grad students riding bikes who saw Brock on top of his victim behind some dumpsters. When they saw Brock he ran. These grad students tackled him and held him down until police arrived. When the police made it to the scene, the rescuers were in tears from what they saw.
This is who you are. You are the tacklers. You are the justice fighters. You are the warriors. This is your role. God wants to use you to stop wickedness in its tracks, to tackle the fleeing criminal and to cry over the deep injustice.
I don’t advocate violence, but if you ever see a woman being forced to do something against her will–you have my blessing to throat punch in the name of God.”
~ Brian Orme, in an excerpt from An Open Letter to my Teenage Boys…
So as our nation continues to be outraged because of the extreme lack of justice in this story, because it seems that everyone except the judge and family of the attacker understands who the real victim is…
I will remember the guys on the bike. They are the beauty in this horrific mess. Surely if the victim can find goodness in her story, so can we. And I trust the promise that justice, one day, WILL be served. But until then, I will teach my children to yes, be the glue.
And always, always… be the guys on the bikes.
“This is what the LORD says: Do what is just and right. Rescue from the hand of the oppressor the one who has been robbed.” ~ Jeremiah 22:3a
But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream! ~ Amos 5:24
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. ~ Matthew 5:6
Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave room for the wrath of God; for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.”
~ Romans 12:19