Today, two men were charged in the murder of Amanda Blackburn. I’m not going to mention their names or what they called their gang. You can go to here if you would like to read more details. Amanda was 12 weeks pregnant with their second child. These men came into her home and shot her in the arm, the lower back and the back of the head. The defendant told his friends that he turned her over to watch her bleed out. They stole her debit card and emptied their account. Her toddler was home at the time, thankfully asleep upstairs.
This crime was horrific and devastating to this young family. The 2 surviving people are forever changed. A toddler will not have his mom and likely forget the sound of her voice. The husband lost the love of his life and the opportunity to grow old together. There is more to this story though. Davey Blackburn is a pastor at a local church. This is his powerful statement.
Though it does not undo the pain we are feeling, I was extremely relieved to get the news of the arrest made last night of Amanda’s killer. The investigators have assured me they have a solidly-built case to ensure justice is levied and the process is expedited. The family and I couldn’t be more thankful for the level of compassion and professionalism the IMPD and investigators have shown us through the last couple of weeks. My hope is for 3 things in the weeks and months to come:
(1) That the court system would have wisdom on how to prosecute this man, so that no one else endures the pain Amanda and our family have had to endure because of his actions.
(2) That through all of this and although there will be great consequences for his actions, he would become truly sorry for what he has done and would even begin to experience the life-transforming power of the Grace and Mercy of Jesus Christ.
(3) That Jesus would give me and our family a heart of forgiveness.
Though everything inside of me wants to hate, be angry, and slip into despair I choose the route of forgiveness, grace and hope. If there is one thing I’ve learned from Amanda in the 10 years we were together, it’s this: Choosing to let my emotions drive my decisions is recipe for a hopeless and fruitless life. Today I am deciding to love, not hate. Today I am deciding to extend forgiveness, not bitterness. Today I am deciding to hope, not despair. By Jesus’ power at work within us, the best is STILL yet to come. Even when I don’t see it, I believe it to be true.
There is nothing in the world like forgiveness, love and grace. When people hear this statement they are in awe. They are captivated by his forgiveness. Whether you realize it or not, the reason you love this so much is because it represents God’s forgiveness. That mindset can reach any soul no matter how far from God they seem. Davey Blackburn…much respect. God cause His face to shine on you!