He heard the accent on the phone before he ever met the man.
And I remember my writer friend in Texas who used to say,
“If you talk with a southern accent people automatically deduct
10 points from their perception of your IQ.”
He would always add, “And if you say ‘Jesus’ in that southern accent,
they automatically deduct 20 points.”
Now my friend on the phone had no excuse.
He is himself from the south!
But there you go.
There’s southern. Then there’s suh-th’n.
Entirely different assumptions.
And then he met the man he had previously
just spoken with on the phone.
Extremely well educated. PhD. in a technical field of study.
All kinds of professional qualifications and accomplishments.
Obvious intelligence in ensuing conversation.
How the man sounded did not fit who he was.
“I was indicted,” said my friend.
“And it was good,” he added.
Now that’s biblical:
we are indicted;
and that is good.
We claim to believe in the way of God, and we are indicted;
we claim to follow God, and we are indicted;
we claim to prioritize God, and we are indicted;
we claim to obey God, and we are indicted;
we claim to worship God, and we are indicted;
we claim to trust God, and we are indicted,
and that’s all good,
and good because as long as we consider ourselves
acquitted of hypocrisy,
exonerated of lying,
absolved of responsibility,
we cannot be indicted into possibility.
We need more of that affirmation:
I was indicted; and it was good.
Liturgically, it translates into confession and repentance.
Relationally, it translates into humility.
Theologically, it translates into honesty.
Spiritually, it translates into faith.
Experientially, it translates into growth.
Scripturally, it translates, well, Scripture.
And oh so practically, it translates into hope.
“I was indicted,” he said.
“And it was good.”
Oh that we might know the same.