Thursday, October 29, 2009

I fought the law...

I was in court today for a traffic ticket, failure to display inspection sticker. I showed up early and was very nervous. I've never been to court before. I usually move to dismiss or plead out and pay my fine in advance. This time, though, it wasn't a big priority to me. This seemed like a no-brainer. I show them proof of inspection and the case is dismissed. However, I couldn't find my receipt. So, here I am in court with no proof and hopes for compassion from the court.

I'm sitting in the room with all of the other offenders and I find myself sitting in judgment over them, priding myself on dressing more nicely or my offense not as severe as theirs. These two are here for Minor in Possession charges. That one was speeding in a school zone. Her dog wasn't registered with the city nor had records of a rabies shot. On and on it went.

The judge comes in and we all rise, per the bailiff's instruction. A short grandmother in a black robe comes in and I begin to relax a bit, foolishly. She reads off the rules of the court and makes no bones about the fact that she will put up with no nonsense. She follows the letter of the law and does not stray far from it. It seems this is going to be a bit more challenging than I initially thought. I'm getting nervous again.

Two people are called before me. Guilty, pay your fine. Not guilty? Show up on this date and be ready to present your case. I am called up next. Gulp!

I come to the front and give her the most charming smile I can muster. It is not returned. I tell her good morning. She replies the same in a very businesslike manner.

How do you plead? I lay out my request for an extension or dismissal. She offers to reduce my fine by $25. She tells me the officer reported I had no inspection sticker. That's not true, Your Honor. The inspection sticker was there. It was just damaged. If that is the case, we have conflicting statements. If you are contesting the charge, plead not guilty and prepare your case against the city prosecutor. You will need to show proof that you had an inspection sticker. I plead not guilty.

All day, I have thought of nothing else, other than proving my innocence. I need to show an inspection sticker that has most likely been thrown away. I have no photos, either. I can only hope the technician who did the replacement will cooperate and provide a statement, assuming he remembers it. I have until February. I will probably have to change my plea.

Today was very sobering to me. I couldn't even defend myself against a class C misdemeanor charge. There is no way I will ever be able to defend my sinful nature in this life. Like today, I need someone, an attorney, who knows the law and is able to defend me before the Judge.

The Bible is very clear that Christ stands as a witness to those who have given themselves as followers of Christ, those who are repentant of their sins and are covered by the blood of the Lamb. Hs is our intercessor, our attorney. His blood stands witness to the fact that He who knew no sin BECAME sin that I may be found innocent on the day of final judgment. I will be absolved and my record is wiped clean. All charges dismissed.

All praise be to God and to the Lamb that was slain!

"My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin And if anyone sins, we have an Advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous" 1 John 2:1

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