If there is one thing that I cannot stand, it is a thief. I think they are an absolute pestilence on society, and there is no use for one. There may be a few exceptions to this rule. Still, generally, thieves have no good excuse for theft other than being lazy and unwilling to accept a productive position in their communities. There are more than just material thieves. There are also emotional thieves, moral thieves, and thieves of peace on top of just possessions.
What has me fired up this week? Last week I spent most of the week working up at my local church. I came home one evening to my son telling me that the animals got out and that we were missing one of the baby goats and one of the lambs. We walked around until dark looking for them, at which point, I called off the search.
I figured with the dark that they hunkered down together, and we would never find them without extreme luck. As we headed back towards the house, a thought nagged at me. They have never left their herd, even when they have escaped before. I thought that was weird, but I brushed it aside, thinking I would find them nearby in the morning or possibly that they would just come back.
I spent a couple of hours the following morning searching, to no avail. Finally, I had to get ready to go work up at the church some more while planning to widen my search area when I got home. That evening when I came home, a goat was roaming the yard, and I decided that before I searched anymore for the lost babies, I needed to figure out how they are getting out and repair the fence first.
While walking the fence, I got to the back corner of the pasture nearest to the woods, and that is where I saw it. The fence was hanging loose. I found the spot, not sure why it would be loose, though; a lot of tension is kept on the fencing.
Upon getting closer, I then noticed that someone had cut the fence. You can tell the difference between a failure in the steel and a cut in the steel. IT had the noticeable pinch in the wire at the break. Looking closer around the area, I found a set of boot prints that did not belong to me. Calling my family down, I had everyone grab their boots so that I could compare tread patterns. They did not belong to any of us.
At that moment, I knew I had been robbed. The anger swelled in me to the point I was about to blow my top. It was not so much that $400 worth of livestock had been stolen as much as all the hard work that I have put into everything for it to be stolen for me.
The money I had spent on that fence, the hours placed into building that fence. The hours and money put into the healthy delivery and raising of those babies. Worse of all, the peace that my property, my piece of paradise in the world, had always brought to my family was broken. In a place where we have raised our children and our animals. Where we have always felt safe and let our guard down, just a little had been violated.
In less than a week, we have gone from not having locked our doors in years to locking everything up. I cannot remember the last time I did not leave my keys in the ignition of my truck. Every comfort that we have had over all these years was destroyed.
I understand that crime has gone up over the past year, and I know crime exists in my area, but you have to understand that my property is an oasis. Completely landlocked except for a 50-foot wide by a 300-yard-long strip of land that my driveway ran down. I am surrounded by woods on three sides, with a cow pasture on the fourth side. Even there is a small strip of woods between my yard and the field.
In other words, my property is not something that you stumble across. You either have to scout the area or have done some research. My neighbor’s fruit trees were also hit the same week. Stripped bare by someone, probably the same people. They found his trees while on my property. Or found my property while on his.
The amount of peace, work, and money stolen from me are absolutely unforgivable. The tears on my daughter’s face when I told her they had been stolen and probably would not be coming back, fed my anger, and dare I say, hatred for the thieves.
Not a very Christian response, and Lord forgive me for it, but I have a very hard time accepting that this was a misdemeanor crime. Not very long ago, a man would be hanged in public for stealing livestock. Honestly, this, to me, is a sign of the weakening of our society, but that is a thought for another article.
Until then, I will leave you with this thought. If you lie to people, you are a thief of the truth. If you commit adultery, you are a thief of another person’s spouse. If you commit fornication, you are a thief of your own holiness, and someone else’s as well. So you see, there are many things that make a thief. And as I stated before, thieves are a pestilence.
If you are guilty of anything I have said, either now or in the past. Let me encourage you to turn from your thieving and return to a morally higher ground of producer and supporter of yourself and your community. Do not add to the societal plague.
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