The conversation I had with Susan Smith that night told me more about myself than about her. I wrestled during that 15-minute encounter and in the weeks that followed.
Did I believe Jesus died for every sinner? Did I assign different judgments to different sins? Would the thief on the cross be in paradise if he were the rapist on the cross? How about the child molester on the cross? Did Saul of Tarsus kill innocent people? Was some tortured? Does God love Susan Smith and her children as much as He loves me and mine? Is salvation really free? I knew the correct answers in my heart, but my head did not want to cooperate. The guards began to clear the room so I finished praying and hugged Susan goodbye. As tears rolled down her cheeks, I couldn’t help but remembering the night her heinous act was exposed during network news. I had a fleeting thought that I am not proud of. I decided that Susan Smith should suffer a slow death. I’m sorry to report that she is. May God have mercy on me.
The resurrection of Jesus Christ changes our views. It affects our reasoning. It challenges our comfort zones. It guarantees many surprises in heaven and it absolutely reverses slow death. It was by far the best Easter I’ve ever had. How will I explain it to the relatives?
Endnote: When Saul came to Jerusalem, he tried to join the disciples, but they were all afraid of him, not believing that he was really a disciple. Acts 9:26