Sunday, December 16, 2007
If the Shoe Fits . . .
If The Shoe Fits. . .
(The rest of the Story)
by Carole Thayne
Recently in our small town we’ve had a rash of thefts. One of the victims had been watching television downstairs. Val is somewhat hard of hearing and didn't realize that upstairs a robbery was taking place. Meanwhile his wife arrived home from grocery shopping. As she went in the back door and heard her husband head out the front door, she assumed he was going to help carry in the load. However it wasn't her husband going out. It was a young man who had just helped himself to the contents of Val’s wallet. Neither of them saw him fleeing the crime.
Well, not to be robbed lying down, or in this case watching television, Val took photographs of the perfect footprints left in the fresh snow. The detective used the photos, matched them to a particular shoe brand, then working through the on-duty police at our local high school began calling boys from our town out of class. Our high school serves about seven communities in the south end of the valley. It didn't take long for this new version of the Cinderella story to find Cinderella, or in this case Cinderfella. Only the winner of this contest wouldn't be living happily ever after, but would rather be the winner of some tough consequences. Confronted with the evidence, he quickly confessed. Remorse and guilt had probably already been working overtime, but now they crashed together. Two young men from our community were responsible for wreaking fear amongst us.
Then a small miracle happened. Hearts were softened as news that a couple of boys from our own good families were responsible. Just the week before at church, I'd heard talk of loaded guns and cross-bows, and “They'll be sorry if they come in my house,” and ”It will be the last crime they commit” sort of stuff. Now the talk was replaced with compassion, love, and prayers. Val, the main man behind the success of “operation footprint,” urged love to be extended to the families of the responsible boys. Those families had already come around with sorrowful apologies. Val's plea was echoed by other victims as well. The boys were lucky to have been caught before someone got a chance to use one of those loaded guns, and before they got themselves into more serious crimes. My sincere prayer is that the boys are able to use this as a learning experience, to step forward, put their mistakes behind them, and get the help they obviously need.
Christmas is a time for miracles and we've just witnessed a little one in Paradise.