Sunday, June 10, 2012

One Day Later

The kid that broke into my house has been on my mind all day.
He is likely a junkie, looking for anything he can quickly convert to cash so he can get another hit of his drug of choice. He doesn't need to be treated as a criminal as much as he needs to get clean. 

Clint posted this youtube clip of Russel Brand's comments at a United Kingdom Parliament Drug Inquiry.
The 36 year old former heroin addict described addiction as an "illness" and said that those suffering from it should be treated with "compassion". He advocates an "abstinence based recovery approach", telling MP's that was how he overcame his addiction to drugs. He suggested that money spent on arresting drug addicts could be better spent on treating them...

My evenings spent at NA meetings have convinced me of the same thing. Drug addicts need to be given hope that there is another way to live. And that it's a good life. One that's rich, and full, and fun, and laughter-and-love-and-grace filled.

Russel Brand's cry for compassion for drug addicts reminded me of the song Mighty to Save
Everyone needs compassion
A love that's never failing
Let mercy fall on me.

Everyone needs forgiveness
A love that's never failing
The hope of nations.

A few weeks ago, The Last Door posted this story. Trust me it's a worthwhile read:

Martine W who is wheel chair bound with terminal cancer left the busy uptown Shoppers Drug Store in New Westminster after picking up her prescriptions and was waiting at the cross walk on Tuesday May 15. While waiting to cross the street, Martine was approached by a 28 year old male who abruptly pushed her wheel chair across the street leaving her in front of the New Westminster Public Library. Martine was somewhat startled and the man left without saying a word. She was scared and had a gut feeling that something was wrong. A person who was nearby and witnessed the exchange approached Martine and said “that guy just went in your bag, he stole your wallet and ran that way.” Also present at the scene were four residents of the Last Door Recovery Center who heard what the man said to Martine. They were outraged and made a decision to chase down the suspect and hold him until the police arrived. 

The man is now in custody but unfortunately he had disposed of the wallet by the time the police arrived. Martine was shaken by the incident but grateful for the support she received from the first man and from the Last Door residents. It turns out these individuals are neighbors, Martine lives a block away from the 100 bed non-profit addiction treatment centre. They have invited Martine and her son to the Last Door for dinner. 

“It’s despicable that someone would rob a women in a wheel chair, I’m just glad I could help out and the gratitude we all felt from Martine is reward enough. New West is my home while I’m in treatment and I respect the whole community” said Mark, a Last Door resident, a recovering addict. 

At first I judged him as a bad person but then I realized he is probably no different than I was when I was living in my active addiction. Initially I questioned if I did the right thing by pursuing him and catching him – but after seeing Martine’s response because of what we did, I feel that my decision to live my amends to society is real and I am a good person. I believe that all addicts can become good people and can contribute to society in a good way” Brad C, a Last Door resident.

“My name is Martine the women who was robbed on Tuesday May 15th, I have terminal cancer as well as other medical conditions. I’ve been fighting cancer for 6 years and most of 2011 has been spent in hospital, I went in walking and left in a wheel chair. I’ve lost two sisters to cancer as well as losing my mom last year.

Although the robbery was traumatic, in the end I will be fine, when I heard that the media was interested in telling my story I thought about it and discussed it with my 23 year old son and I had decided that I wasn’t comfortable with the attention, nor did I want to be a sob story for people to read about and what I have shared with you is the story I didn’t want told. 

I called Last Door to reiterate my gratitude to the four young man who came to my aid, and came to realize this is their story too, it also belongs to the man with his young daughter who witnessed the robbery and gave the four young man from Last Door the description of the man who robbed me. He also gave me the last $20 in his pocket and apologized for only having $20, but in that moment in meant everything. I didn’t get to thank him properly so Thank you. The story also belongs to the man who stood by me when I was sitting there in shock not knowing what to do, so thank you again.

And this is the story to be told……

On that day there was one person who did a terrible thing but there were far more acts of kindness that took place that day. And the courage from the four young men from Last Door each on their own journey of recovery like me - where we take one day at a time and May 15th was a very fine day for all of us.
I am proud of them and all those who try to get their lives back and join their community they are my neighbours and I know I am happy that Last Door is part of my community. So in the end the story is about community, respect and looking out for each other. 


So, if you're the praying type, could you join me in praying for the guy who broke into my house? I'm praying specifically that he gets into treatment. At a 12-step facility with a strong recovery community, just like the one in New West. 

He can move the moutains
My God is mighty to save.
He is mighty to save

Shine your light and let the whole word see
For the glory of the risen King


The Bible verse that comes to mind is Genesis 50:20, and if I ever meet the kid who took my laptop and jewelry, I pray that I would have the courage to say to him - "You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good."


Three FIVE Things I'm thankful for:
1. It's just 'stuff'. And God knows where it is. If He wants me to have it back again - it will be done. If not, I've learned a HUGE lesson on the importance of backing up everything IMMEDIATELY, not once a year. 

2. It could have been SO MUCH WORSE. Thank you God for Your protection. 

3. Friends and friends and more friends who have been praying for me. THANK YOU. I've felt the love and am experiencing the peace.

4. So very thankful that my mom has this 'come on over' attitude. I know that no matter what gets thrown at me next, I will never be homeless as long as my mom is around.

5. On my mind right now is my dad. And I am thankful that my mom loves him. You have no idea. 


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