It just happens to be a lovely day in April. One may be surprised to hear that we still had snow April 1st around these parts. I said to myself, "Snow? on April Fool's Day? Don't ever tell me God doesn't have a sense of humor."
Recently, I started (at the suggestion of a friend) reading the well-known classic "The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes" by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Before I started reading the book my main knowledge of Sherlock Holmes was from as a child in Disney's "The Great Mouse Detective", a special episode of "Wishbone" about "The Hounds of Baskervilles", and that in the first paragraph of C.S. Lewis's "The Chronicles of Narnia: The Magician's Nephew", Lewis mentions Mr. Sherlock Holmes living on Baker Street during the time when "The Magician's Nephew" took place. Interesting yes? Other than these I had no knowledge of the genius as well as oddities held by the famous Sherlock Holmes.
So far, I am loving the book. The way Sir Arthur Conan Doyle describes not only his characters, but also the mysteries and situations they find themselves in are spectacular. The more I read the more I find myself trying to "think" like Holmes, and I have come to discover I am very terrible at it. Most recently, I read a case (I will not include it's title since I am going to reveal some spoilers) where a man was found murdered in the woods behind his house. The man, we soon came to learn was a lying, cheating, blackmailing, manipulator out to destroy the lives of those he deemed "lesser" then himself. In the end, Holmes deduces who the murderer is and gets the murderer's confession. We learn that the murderer was one of the men that the victim manipulated throughout the past few year of the man's life and he finally snapped. Holmes says to the murderer in the ending, "you are yourself aware that you will soon have to answer for your deed at a higher court..." Too true, but what I was surprised to read was after Holmes acquires the murderer's signed confession he tells the murderer (who was a regretful, dying old man) that he will not present the murderer's confession to anyone unless deemed absolutely necessary in the coming court case relating to the murder.
For a moment after finishing the story, I was shocked. "Mr. Holmes? Aren't you supposed to be the epitome of justice? Murder is still murder whether the man was a bad person or not!" I thought to myself. Then, I was reminded of something. Well, God reminded me of something is what I really think. I thought of my attitude toward the murderer in this story and I thought, "Well, I'm glad Jesus didn't have that attitude when he came to earth to die for the world." ... because if all sins in God's eyes are equal, then God had every right to condemn us. He had no reason to need to be merciful to us, and yet He was. He is.
So in conclusion, I must say "Thank you Mr. Holmes, for reminding me how great my God is and how merciful He is to a sinner like me." That was not a lesson I expected to learn from Sherlock Holmes, but it was awesome.
It doen't take a genius slueth like Sherlock Holmes much to remind me what an amazingly merciful, faithful, and grace-giving God I serve.
CASE CLOSED. wow.
"And you must show mercy to those whose faith is wavering. Rescue others by snatching them from the flames of judgment. Show mercy to still others, but do so with great caution, hating the sins that contaminate their lives."
Jude 22:23 (NLT)