Friday, December 11, 2015
Charged, but not Convicted
I picked up a job application from a reputable employer.
Nineteen years ago I was charged with a class A misdemeanor. I spent 20 hours in jail. I got out on a PR bond. (failure to ID an 18 year old who bought a 6 pack of beer in a convenient store where I worked in a sting operation on the DAY the 21 law went into effect in Austin, Texas). I paid my lawyer $800. She told me to plead "no contest". The folder in front of the judge had writing on it in big red letters: NO DEFERRALS.
The judge asked me for my plea. I did as my lawyer advised. The judge looked at my record. I had no priors. I was clean. The judge said, "This folder says no deferrals, but this is MY court. I can do what I want to."
I was sentenced to a $400 fine, 24 hours of community service, a misdemeanor 1 class (where I was placed with violent offenders because they had no category for my crime yet) that cost me $50. AND, I had a year's probation ($40/month at that time) ALL with deferred adjudication, and a warning not to make the same mistake twice.
I was mad at the lawyer.
Today, I am thankful for her.
I read my job application. It says, "If you have ever been convicted of a class A or B misdemeanor you are not qualified.
Deferred Adjudication means charged, but not convicted.
I jumped through all the hoops. So, I can honestly say I was not convicted when asked.
Got to thinking about this.
I am charged with crimes that are punishable by death in God's Eyes. But, HE has offered deferred adjudication if I jump through some hoops.
In HIS court, He only asks that I jump through one: accepting Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. Claiming HIS redemption by the blood of HIS sacrifice, and to go and sin no more.
I did that. So now, though I have been charged, I am not convicted to death!
My lawyer in the eternal court is none other than the Son of God Himself, Lord Jesus! Though I can't see the ultimate reward right now, I know that when the day comes that the Father does a background check on me, He will find my crimes are washed clean by the blood of the Lamb.
“And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”