The title is a paraphrase from a favorite movie of mine (surprised?), and it occured to me after the aftermath of the robbery came hard and fast on Tuesday.
We had the help of an eye witness who put himself...in the literal sense...on the line by showing us where one of the people he saw as they were breaking in and taking things (they took quite a bit of stuff).
Due to the very predictable response we were sure to get if we went to the house unaided, we approached the local constables requesting assistance only in recuperating what belonged to us.
Well, being proven correct is not always pleasant. We approached the house of the individual identified (he could be seen through the open front door with our eye witness), with the obvious presence of the police, and asked Mr. X to give us what he took, to settle it like friends and be done with the matter. Mr. X choose to give the same schpiel as Sgt. Schultz, only without the German accent: "I know nothing!" At this point, the police stepped in...said there was an eye witness, and that he would be coming with them....suddenly, an epiphany! With a quick call inside the house, a digital camera was produced. Amazing.
Then the hunt was on....I felt like I was on a sickening slow roller coster where I was told to follow the police as they did there thing, following leads from person to person, leading them from house to house.
I have seen enough Law and Order to know what was going on was....well on second thought I never saw anything like this on Law and Order. Everyone first protested greatly...we have nothing, only for four homes to fall to having things they could not explain how they procured, especially when we identified them as ours. The worst was the guy that hid the DVD players he took, but failed to hide my obviously big, odd, and official camo military hat I use for work. Me: That looks like my hat. Police: Where did you get that hat? Mr. T: I pity the fool! whoops....Mr. Y "Uh, I don't know". You can take it from there.
Well, so did the police. It was a bit surreal the whole process...the police station, the guards, the sounds, the families arriving hoping to get their sons/husbands/boyfriends back. All thinking we had some power to tell them to release them after they had been found with the stolen things. The whole five hour process was educational, in the kind of way you wish you had not learned something.
We shared with our brothers and sisters (the families of those involved represented at the station) the iniquity of it all, of all of us, the lieing, the stealing, the forgiveness available that lasts only from God...this after the TV cameras came to push the police's view of nabbing a big theft ring...and as we were discussing the whole ugly chapter in this ugly saga, another media truck pulled up and we all decided for all those involved it would be best if we all left...families, us, friends.
What will happen? What will we all learn? Will we get our "stuff" back? Will the judge decide to put the men in prison despite our lack of any pressing charges? Only God knows. We pray for wisdom, for the Holy Spirit to guide us and those involved in all the areas as this situation hopefully comes to a close at least in terms of incarcination, but for also healing and a new chapter in the relationship between the Church and these neighbors who we are hoping to reach, no matter how many break-ins (and I have lost count) we have.