“I’m hoping for forgiveness,” he said.

by Hobbes, SOTB Staff

I plopped down in the chair next to a young man. It was Tuesday night and, as usual, I had taken some of the School of the Bible students to talk with juvenile offenders here in Madison.

This young man smiled a lot, which was a little unusual. I asked him why he was smiling.

“It’s because I’m getting to know God,” he said. “It’s because I have time to read the Bible now and I come here every week with you guys.”

“How do you feel about your trial coming up?” I asked.

“I’m hoping for forgiveness,” he mumbled.

“Here’s the catch,” I said, “God forgives you for what you did, but now he wants you to take responsibility for what you’ve done and accept the consequences. Understanding this is a part of living righteously, even after God has shown us mercy.”

His eyes teared up a bit as he said with as much strength as he could, “I’m OK with that.”

He met my eyes as we continued talking, the weight of his upcoming trial visibly lifted from his shoulders.

It’s so exciting to see the principles we see in the Bible really working in people’s lives!