Jack took a long look at his speedometer before slowing down, 73 MPH in
a 55 zone. The fourth time in four months. How could a guy get caught so
When his car had slowed to 10 miles an hour, Jack pulled over, but only
partially. Let the cop worry about the potential traffic hazard. Maybe
some other car will tweak his backside with a mirror. The cop was
stepping out of his car, the big pad in hand.
Bob? Bob from Church? Jack sunk farther into his trenchcoat. This was
worse than the coming ticket. A cop catching a guy from his own church,
who happened to be a little eager to get home after a long day at the
office. A guy he was about to play golf with tomorrow.
Jumping out of the car, he approached a man he saw every Sunday, a man
he'd never seen in uniform.
"Hi, Bob. Fancy meeting you like this."
Hello, Jack." No smile.
"Guess you caught me red-handed in a rush to see my wife and kids."
"Yeah, I guess." Bob seemed uncertain. Good.
"I've seen some long days at the office lately. I'm afraid I bent the
rules a bit -just this once."
Jack toed at a pebble on the pavement. "Diane said something about roast
beef and potatoes tonight. Know what I mean?" "I know what you mean. I
also know that you have a reputation in our precinct." Ouch. This was
not going in the right direction, time to change tactics.
"What'd you clock me at?"
"Seventy. Would you sit back in your car please?"
"Now wait a minute here, Bob. I checked as soon as I saw you. I was
barely nudging 65." The lie seemed to come easier with every ticket.
"Please, Jack, in the car"
Flustered, Jack hunched himself through the still-open door. Slamming it
shut, he stared at the dashboard. He was in no rush to open the window.
The minutes ticked by. Bob scribbled away on the pad.
Why hadn't he asked for a driver's license?
Whatever the reason, it would be a month of Sundays before Jack ever sat
near this cop again. A tap on the door jerked his head to the left.
There was Bob, a folded paper in hand Jack rolled down the window a mere
two inches, just enough room for Bob to pass him the slip.
"Thanks." Jack could not quite keep the sneer out of his voice.
Bob returned to his police car without a word. Jack watched his retreat
in the mirror. Jack unfolded the sheet of paper. How much was this one
going to cost?
Wait a minute. What was this, some kind of joke?
Certainly was not a ticket. Jack began to read:
Once upon a time I had a daughter. She was six when killed by a car. You
guessed it, a speeding driver. A fine and three months in jail, and the
man was free, free to hug his daughters, all three of them. I only had
one, and I'm going to have to wait until Heaven before I can ever hug
A thousand times I've tried to forgive that man. A thousand times I
thought I had. Maybe I did, but I need to do it again, even now. Pray
for me. And be careful, Jack, my son is all I have left."
Jack turned around in time to see Bob's car pull away and head down the
road. Jack watched until it disappeared. A full 15 minutes later, he
too, pulled away and drove slowly home, praying for forgiveness and
hugging a surprised wife and kids when he arrived.
Life is precious. Handle with care. This is an important message. Drive
safely and carefully. Remember, cars are not the only things recalled by