In the last couple of weeks, I have found myself struggling. I am decidedly and firmly against the death penalty – not a popular stance in Texas, mind you. Still I believe the state is not God, however often we tend to confuse the two. Only God should pronounce such judgment on a person, not the state. I have been very comfortable in my position for a number of years now, that is until the last few weeks.
Each month I receive a list of people the State of Texas intends to execute. Last week, I struggled; I admit it. While the nation was talking about Troy Davis in Georgia, Texas executed Lawrence Brewer. Brewer was convicted in the death and torture of James Byrd. This is the kind of crime that makes me sick to my stomach. When I received his name, I admit, I didn’t want to do my usual work. I didn’t want to pray for him, though obviously I prayed for the Byrd family. I didn’t want send a letter on his behalf to anyone. But am I against the death penalty for everyone, or just those who committed a crime that doesn't make me sick? or that I don't remember?
As I struggled with my own heart this week, I came across an article in the Huffington Post. I’m going to try to include a link for it here. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rev-jc-austin/troy-davis-and-lawrence-brewer-the-burden-of-care_b_977875.html?ncid=edlinkusaolp00000008
I don’t know how to resolve my own issue, but I think that I try, somehow pleases God, at least I hope so. That I try to find compassion for Brewer I think is pleasing to God; maybe not.