Just desserts were delayed
There are times in lives when the sun seems to rise and then those when it seems to set. For Ted Graham, the sun had set long ago. Maybe he was wracked over his ill-treatment of the young charges given him, or perhaps the sun had also set on his conscience.
Many years ago, decades even, when I was a child I would hear the following verse: “Be sure your sin will find you out.” That verse is from Numbers 32:23. While some people may discount such verses as ways to manipulate children, I think those same naysayers would still conceive the abuses of Ted Graham as reprehensible.
Could Ted have repented of his actions? Absolutely. Would it have annulled them? Not before humanity, but it would have been honorable. Turning away would have limited the suffering he repeatedly smashed into the lives lived around him.
In chapter 17 his sins finally began to catch up with him. While he should have abandoned his ill-deeds and left the priesthood, he did not. What he would not do was thus done to him making the all-around consequences much more severe. We are not given any glimpse into Ted’s mind. Was he relieved at finally being found out? Some people are, but the way he reacted during his indictment suggests otherwise.
Relief can also be delayed
Ginny’s outlook on the refugee camps of Afganistan, Syria, and India was one of firm resolve. Conflict arose, however, when her devotion to Blue began to conflict with those trips. She canceled one delaying it for what she hoped would be a better time. When the next assignment came, it remained inconvenient forcing her to choose between Blue and her agency. The personal connection with Blue had proportions which consumed her on a new level. That level was one she knew to be important, and as such she reluctantly asked for another delay in deployment.
Sometimes relief comes immediately after a decision. Other times, this time, it came later. Relief did arrive but in its own sweet time.
Does destiny have a hand?
Do you spell destiny with a capital letter? The last sentence of our chapter suggests the answer is yes as Steel personifies destiny by giving it a hand. The thing is that destiny has no life of its own. It is not living, breathing, caring, interested. Sounds a bit like an idol, doesn’t it?
I am not interested in faulting Steel which is mostly rabbit chasing. Far more important is that we recognize her concluding sentence for what it represents. Crediting chance, one’s lucky stars or destiny, as Steel construes it, is all too common, and common is not helpful as we drive along our personal Route 66.
Billboards pop up all along our highways telling us what to expect in 5 miles or at exit 13. The Bible is the best billboard, and it announces that God is real. He cares about our destiny, and so we should give credit where it is due. Steel is not beyond involving God in matters for she hints at his involvement at crucial moments. I want to live with more than hints. Hopefully, I write and speak more than hints.
Ginny and Blue are relieved after so many ups and downs. Give thanks to God and take it all to the next level.
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