KODIAK — Isaiah 30:16-16: “In repentance and rest is your salvation, in quietness and trust in your strength, but you would have none of it. You said, ‘No, we will flee on horses.’ Therefore, you will flee! You said, ‘We will ride off on swift horses.’ Therefore, your pursuers will be swift!”

Hahaha, when I read these verses I instantly had the movie screen of my mind flash the word “outlaw” from the wild west of America’s frontier days, cattle rustlers, gun slingers, stage coach hold ups, bank and train robberies.

Of course, this lead to cracking the books open, surfing the highway of history. Outlaws have been with us much longer than western outlaws.

The earliest that I could find the use of the term, was an old Norse word “otlar.”

I find the history of this term interesting as it has morphed over the years of time. As I understand it, part of the punishment of when banishment was declared, you were declared outside the protection of the law, therefore, an open target by society.

In modern times it seems the opposite is true, which brings to mind the quote from Shakespeare’s play “The Merry Wives of Windsor”: “why then the world’s mine oyster, which I with sword will open.”

Modern times at moments are a great joy of achievement and marvel, while there are mind numbing absurdities. The pendulum of law and justice are an example. Say perhaps the legal system of the late 60’s early 70’s, compared to our current 2018. While most of us are compassionate towards others who are struggling having fallen on hard times.

All along there is the unexplainable, inescapable idea to romanticize the outlaw, the sneak thief, burglar that allows this social ill to perpetuate this plague upon the community to continue.

It’s already tough enough to have our people dealing with lack of employment, with our economic struggles, trying to keep up with the daily grind, just to maintain. This rip and run, rob and ravage is not only destroying businesses but robbing our community stability. I personally and automatically am compelled to regurgitate the Robin Hood notion in any form.

I guess one of the saddest realities is all this damage and hurt is for nothing; the monies gained, the items taken from the trail of tears will be squandered in a day perhaps more or less, but there will be nothing of personal or community value to show for it.

There’s a soul sickness of spirit among us. It has infected some with a soul sickness of selfishness that it’s easier to hurt than help.

If you’re lost and hurting, I refer back to the opening Scripture, “In repentance and rest is your salvation.”

Repentance is simple if you’re going the wrong way. Repentance is turning around, going the right way.

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