Sunday, March 07, 2004

Justice comes in the most unexpected ways. At the most unexpected times. But it does come.

Several years have passed since that Wednesday night. I walked from the Fireside Building, across the parking lot and into the courtyard of the church. As I approached the main entrance he stopped me. A middle-aged man like me. He was drinking from a can of Sprite. I don't remember what he asked me but a question was posed. I told him that I did not know the answer but that I would try to remember to research the issue when I got home. That's when he did it. Without even pausing he took the semi-filled can of Sprite and poured it down my shirt. "There. Now when you get home that will remind you so that you don't forget." He looked at me. I can clearly remember the thoughts that flashed through my head. I am not ashamed of them. I was thinking what any sane man would think. I will not tell you. Simply use your imagination. You will most certainly be correct. On the other hand, no thoughts were going through his head. He didn't have a brain. You cannot think without a brain. He was living proof. I did not say a word. I glared. I stepped to the side and walked around him. We never spoke of the incident again. We seldom spoke again at all. I was pleased with that arrangement.

I saw him again yesterday. It has been well over a year since we had crossed paths. He has left our church. But I came across him in a combination gas statiion/convenience store. I was entering and he was exiting. We caught each others eye. He spoke first. It was a tame and suitable greeting. I returned it. He was drinking from a plastic cup from the fountain soda area. As I asked how he was doing, he turned the bottom of the cup upward to take a drink. He missed his mouth. It was only a slight miscalculation on his part. But it was enough. The soda leaked out from around his lips and ran down his shirt. He looked down with disdain.

I looked up. Beyond the ceiling. Beyond the sky. Beyond the stars. And i winked. I stepped around him and walked on.

Justice comes in the most unexpected ways. At the most unexpected times. But it does come.