“O earth, do not cover my blood; may my cry never be laid to rest! Even now my witness is in heaven; my advocate is on high. My intercessor is my friend as my eyes pour out tears to God; on behalf of a man he pleads with God as a man pleads for his friend.” Job 16:18-21
I started my day in tears at the fact that Whitney Heichel’s remains were found sometime late yesterday. Whitney is a 21 years young woman with a husband, family, friends and a faith community. She disappeared on her way to work at a Portland, Oregon area Starbucks. Tuesday was a normal day for this young woman that evidently turned immediately, insanely abnormal. I know little of this young woman except that which her husband and family have shared. She is deeply loved, characterized as sweet and caring, with an open and genuine face. Their grief seeps into me and I’m agonized for them. When Becky died I was crushed by the ‘why’ of such a senseless death. But, at the same time, there was a level of understanding that the completely unbiased laws of nature had intersected with my daughter’s path that day and an accident happened that took her life. With Whitney’s death no accident is involved. It is becoming ever more evident that a young man, a ‘neighbor’ (can you use that word for someone who could do this?), took from her and those who love her that which he had no right to take. Ever. There is no accident here.
I am pierced and angry and in deep sorrow over this situation. As in similar circumstances that take something no one has the right to take and leave crippled and changed the injured one and those who love the injured one I want to call for some horrible torturous lingering punishment for the perpetrator of the crime. A part of me wants death for this person so that the world is made safe once again. But death does not bring that safety because the next injury is just a neighbor away. And death just somehow seems too easy. Then the Spirit nudges and I sense the grief of God over this same situation. His heart breaks for all the injured innocents and in love that I can’t apprehend His heart breaks and His body is broken for the one who injured. What hideous torturous captivity could bring a person to the place of this crime? What wrong-headed twisted imprisoned soul lashed out in this murderous act? I weep again for the imprint of the Father of Lies on individuals and society. And I long to the depths of my soul for full redemption, full restoration, of all that Father God created.
Over and over again I see beautiful lives injured by selfish, unthinking acts of incredible horror unleashed upon innocence. The repercussions from these choices go on from generation to generation and alter even the way that those so injured see their world. I feel the Spirit groan within me, interceding in ways I’m unable to articulate. And I feel called to intercede on behalf of those who love Whitney and of this young man and of those who love him. Satan’s defeat is sure and like any enemy as he sees the end of battles looming he is stepping up his activity in a last-ditch effort to break the back of the victors. Please join me in praying, interceding into the power of restoration, redemption, the amazing grace and freedom of our Lord that will keep from bondage those newly injured by another’s appalling sin. I pray that those whom Satan intends to victimize will be victors through the immense power of Jesus Christ.
And together we pray Maranatha! Come quickly Jesus!
“Do not be afraid,” Samuel replied. “You have done all this evil; yet do not turn away from the LORD, but serve the LORD with all your heart. Do not turn away after useless idols. They can do you no good, nor can they rescue you, because they are useless. For the sake of his great name the LORD will not reject his people, because the LORD was pleased to make you his own. As for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the LORD by failing to pray for you.” 1 Sam 12:20-23