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Forgiveness

RIP

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I had something happen today that is way past just strange. A father whose family I investigated, and found that he was molesting his children and abusing his wife, walked up to me and said that he would never again be with his family because of it. He said his wife is divorcing him and she is soon to regain custody of the children, in large part because she has excluded him from her life. He was not belligerent or threatening, just filled with hate, I suppose, and wanted me to know how I had ruined his life. This is the very sort of man that is the only sort for which I find nothing in myself but enmity. I so wanted to offer to escort him outside for a "tune up". As these thoughts raced through my mind, I was locked in to his eyes. I wanted to hurt him. I wanted to give him back some taste of the pain he has put into the world. Then I saw it. Not fear. Genuine anguish, he was anguished over the consequences of his actions. Suddenly, my straining to not act out in violent retribution, had turned into a teachable moment. I had him at an instant of time wherein he was vulnerable. I told him the story of the adulterous woman and Jesus saying to her, "Go thy way and sin no more." I pointed out that Jesus didn't say to her to right all her wrongs. He said "Sin no more." I told him that his first priority is to resolve never to touch another child, another woman, never to put a hand ever again to anyone to use them without regard for them first and foremost. Then to execute that resolve, every day with every one. Only that is repentance. I told him that in repentance is forgiveness. If he repents of his sin, he is forgiven, even by himself. I told him that whether he is a Christian or not, the principle is the same. Take it out of religion and it is just the idea that to be truly sorry, is not simply to wish it didn't happen, because you can't change the past. To be truly sorry is to make sure it never happens again. If you make sure it never happens again, one day you will realize you are not the same man that did those horrible things, you have made yourself over into someone else. Someone, not any longer guilty, but rather someone forgiven his past. Maybe not by your ex-wife or your children, but forgiven none the less.



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:thumbup2:Very very sage advice, RIP and I applaud your courage in not hesitating to give it to this man rather than pound him into the ground. It had to have taken a great deal of self discipline on your part. I can only hope your words will stay in his mind and he will turn his life around.

You didn't cause any of his problems, HE did; But, of course, you already know that. God Bless you in all that you do and all those lives you save.

Cindylu

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Santa Marty

Posted

Very constructive moment, especially after the "tune up" remark which I found most amusing.

Thanks for sharing.

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Kris Claus

Posted

Santa Rip, you did the right thing. Even if he repents, there is an earthly price to pay. Don't be so shocked if you hear of him doing the same thing in the future to someone else. Some people just don't learn. You did your part, all you can do now is pray.

Not to sound negative, it's just after 20+ years of homeless ministry I find some people just aren't reachable. So, you learn to move on to the people who want the help.

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Santa Rip, you did the right thing. Even if he repents, there is an earthly price to pay. Don't be so shocked if you hear of him doing the same thing in the future to someone else. Some people just don't learn. You did your part, all you can do now is pray.

Not to sound negative, it's just after 20+ years of homeless ministry I find some people just aren't reachable. So, you learn to move on to the people who want the help.

Well, after twenty five years in Child Protective Services, I have learned very well indeed that people only rarely choose to change. What is certain however is that if they do change it will be from hope for something better rather than fear of something worse. Unfortunately, with Child Molesters, the outcomes are essentially dismal. Decades of experience in attempting to treat and provide therapy to those who have sexual feelings toward children have revealed that they DO NOT get better. I am almost never in sympathy with the "Lock them up, and throw away the key" approach to criminal justice. I make an exception for those who have sex with children. Once convicted, they should always and only receive life sentences without possibility of parole, because given an oppurtunity, they are GOING to do it some more. I have met children with absolutely NO boundaries in their minds about what can be done to and with them. In the twisted world they live in, adults have taught them that whoever, whenever, whatever, they are to cooperate without the slightest resistance. It is the most bizzare thing you could ever experience to have a little child that you are trying to get to talk about what happens, and you can hardly get them to keep their hands (and everything else) to themselves as you talk. In their world adults want the child to perform, not talk to them. Well, enough of that, but maybe that will tell you why I sometimes have more than a little desire to just reach out and "touch" the molester, with something other than kindness. What saves me at the end of the day is to look to Yeshua, the carpenter from Nazereth. Whether you worship Him or not, He set for all of us an example that is worth following. What an amazing life He exemplified. My sincerest hope is be like Him, as much as I can.

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Kevin Haislip

Posted

RIP, my wife and I have also been involved in CPS for about 27 years. Though they are rare, there are people who turn things around. Three years ago, my wife and I had to move to terminate parental rights on our daughter from her three children because of drugs, neglect and criminal charges. I have no doubt it was hardest on her, but it was very hard for us as well. Because of our age, we adopted the grandchildren out to another young couple. The three of them have wonderful parents who love the Lord.

The best part is that the rehab our daughter went to was staffed by Christians who helped point her to the Lord. She IS a new person. I know it continues to grieve her about her children, but she acknowledges that even now, nearly 4 years later, she would not be able to care for them. She has very limited contact with the kids, but is thankful they have a good home, and that my wife and I are still able to be in their lives. Our own relationship with our daughter has been the best it has ever been. She is a great blessing and delight to us.

In our years with CPS, we have seen less than a handful of turn-arounds. But I do know that most of them were a direct result of much prayer on our part, asking God to save them, even if they had to hit the wall to get their attention. It sounds like you have someone you need to begin keeping a matter of prayer (and I'll join you.).

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RIP, my wife and I have also been involved in CPS for about 27 years. Though they are rare, there are people who turn things around. Three years ago, my wife and I had to move to terminate parental rights on our daughter from her three children because of drugs, neglect and criminal charges. I have no doubt it was hardest on her, but it was very hard for us as well. Because of our age, we adopted the grandchildren out to another young couple. The three of them have wonderful parents who love the Lord.

The best part is that the rehab our daughter went to was staffed by Christians who helped point her to the Lord. She IS a new person. I know it continues to grieve her about her children, but she acknowledges that even now, nearly 4 years later, she would not be able to care for them. She has very limited contact with the kids, but is thankful they have a good home, and that my wife and I are still able to be in their lives. Our own relationship with our daughter has been the best it has ever been. She is a great blessing and delight to us.

In our years with CPS, we have seen less than a handful of turn-arounds. But I do know that most of them were a direct result of much prayer on our part, asking God to save them, even if they had to hit the wall to get their attention. It sounds like you have someone you need to begin keeping a matter of prayer (and I'll join you.).

Mr. Haislip, many people do change. If you didn't believe that, you would be in the wrong business as a CPS worker. Unfortunately, there are two issues for parents involved with CPS wherein I can count the number that have seen change on one hand and I don't need a single finger to do it. One is sexual abuse, Psychiatry, Social Work, Spiritual Leaders, all are reporting the same result from decades of hopeful and earnest effort, molesters refrain from further abuse only so long as they know they will be caught. The other is Meth-Amphetamine abuse. Tweakers do not choose their children over their drug, doesn't happen. I am personally acquainted with ONE recovering tweaker...ONE. He did not quit the Meth because the State took his children. He quit when his last tooth fell out and he looked in the mirror and saw a walking corpse. My hat is off to him, he has my respect for sure. Think about it, what is it I am doing? I walk into YOUR house, tell you you are not fit to raise YOUR children and I take them. Then I tell you all you have to do to get them back is get off the Meth and stay off it. Do they do it? No, they do not. Never seen or heard of it one time. I keep trying, I know it can be done. I'll help you any way I can. But at the end of the day, you have got to decide to stop, then never do it again. I do not know and certainly I would never ask for any specifics about your family. I sincerely hope that the man who confronted me, that is spoken of above, does as is suggested. I would love to be surprised in that way. In the meantime, I have a duty to protect, and protecting the innocent, does not contemplate trusting the malefactor. I can see from what you say above that you are not hearing anything new to you in this response. My hat is off to you and your wife for the stance you have taken. Sometimes love has to be a pretty tough hombre, and that is not easy, especially for one who has to be the tough guy.

In any case, my enmity for child molesters has been decades in developing and probably is not a characteristic I should be proud of. But I am not ashamed of it. You see, it isn't just as the investigation is in process that I get to interact with these children, I am often enough the one responsible for them for years. I see them struggle with what has been done. I see how it twists them up inside and poisons their lives. I have seen them many times become the thing that victimized them, is that poisonous enough? It is a near thing for me, with many molesters I have known over the years. You want it to never be done by that person to another child ever again. I assure you, the law is not what stops me. It is that Carpenter and Itinerate Preacher, Joseph and Mary's Boy, Yeshua. What He thinks, is what I must learn to think. How He acts, is how I must learn to act. If when you think of doing a thing you can't imagine Yeshua taking that course, then it's time to quit and rethink. Forgiveness...I don't want to, but I must, and I must make it not just something on the outside. I'm working on it.

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Santa,

You are a true protector of the defenseless. The father may change or not, but the most important thing is the children and the mother. We can't make people change. We can point them in the right direction, and that's what you have done. clap_1.gifYou earned you wings and are a true Human.

Santa Snow

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