My Chains Are Gone

Posted: July 20, 2007 in family, friends, sin

Just over 7 years ago I committed a criminal offense. I did it. It was horrible, wrong, shameful, terrible, hideous, etc. I’ve never denied my guilt. Just under 7 years ago I was placed under arrest at about 11:30pm after having driven from Detroit, Michigan all the way to Knoxville to meet with police personnel. I spent the night in jail. My good friend bailed me out around 9:00am the next morning.

Exactly 6 years ago, I was sentenced to 6 years of enhanced probation with the state of TN. Today, that sentence has expired. The words that keep popping in my head are the refrain of Chris Tomlin’s new version of Amazing Grace…”my chains are gone, I’ve been set free, my God my Savior, has ransomed me.”

Ultimately, sin is sin. Lying…sin. Stealing…sin. Envy…sin. Pornography…sin. Mistreatment of others…sin. Lust…sin. All sin has a cost. Some more than others. Some may cost more here on earth, all will cost us in eternity. We will account for our sin. We will be rewarded because of our righteousness.

This is going to be pretty “rough”, because I don’t have much time….but I’d like to give a brief overview of what my criminal act of sin has cost me in the last 7 years. Here it goes:

  • Approximately $16,000 in fines, misc fees, and legal fees.
  • Approximately $30,000 in lost wages.
  • Completed 576 hours of fairly grueling community service work.
  • Attended about 175 group counseling sessions, totalling about 250-300 hours.
  • Submitted to 9 polygraph tests over 5 years.
  • For the first 19 months of my son’s life, I was not allowed to care for him by myself.
  • For the next 12 months of his life, I was only allowed to care for him by myself while my wife was at work.
  • Almost all of my immediate family live in Kentucky, about 3 hours away. In the last 5 years, because of travel restrictions, I’ve been to Kentucky a grand total of 1 time.
  • Because of the above restriction, my parents (and brother/sisters) have probably driven to Knoxville at least 12-15 times in the last 3 years to visit, often spending the night on our living room floor and spending who knows how much in gas and food money.
  • Summer of 2004 – was forced to move residences within 1 weeks time.
  • Numerous lost friendships and relationships.
  • Until today, I have not worn shorts in public in almost 2 years. This because I’ve had to wear a “box” on my belt and a bracelet on my ankle since September 2005.
  • Went through a significant period of time when I wondered if I would ever attend a church again.

I’m sure there’s more I could add to this list. But you get the point. You do bad things, you suffer bad consequences. Thank God for watching over me all this time. Thank God for my wife who’s loved me throughout. Thank God for my family (including in-laws) that have supported me and done whatever needed when we were in a pickle. Thank God for some of you reading this who’ve remained loyal friends. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

I hope this helps shed some light on the name of my blog…Life Recaptured.

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Comments
  1. Anonymous says:

    whew. you paid dearly. were there costs to anyone besides you and your family? or was this one of those “victimless” crimes?

  2. jason says:

    Good question. It was a computer-related crime. Technically, no “physical” victims. But I’ve come to know and believe there really are no victimless crimes. Someone is always hurt by a crime, whether directly or indirectly.

  3. x-ray chick says:

    Shackles off my feet so I can dance! I just want to praise YOU!

    Wow. You truly and literally know what it was like to be set free. That is awesome.

    The fact that it brought you closer to God… even more awesome!

    Romans 8:28

    Bless you for your blatant honesty.
    Bless you for your passion for Christ.

    Bless your family and friends who stuck with you.

    Everyones story amazes me, thank you for sharing.

  4. Anonymous says:

    praise God for your delivery and your victory. Hang in there.

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