"O to grace how great a debtor daily I'm constrained to be."
While playing this song in church last Sunday, my imagination decided to carry me to the land of Monte Cristo and to focus for a moment on the unforgettable Jacabo. I saw him laying there on the sand after losing a fight to a nameless stranger...
When Edmond finally breaks out of jail, he washes ashore and immediately encounters a man in trouble. Jacabo made a bad choice, and he was going to have to pay with his life. He's given a chance to to get out of his fate by fighting Edmond. And he probably thought it was going to be a walk in the park. After all, he's the best knife fighter Luigi has ever seen and Edmond is little more than jailbait. But he's easily bested. And Jababo's out of luck. But then something happens he could never have seen coming. Edmond offers Luigi a different solution and Jacabo's life is spared. Cue one of my favorite movie quotes: "I swear on my dead relatives - and even on the ones who are not feeling too good - I am your man forever!" What else could he do?
Jacabo is indebted to Edmond's grace and their journey begins. That doesn't mean they're always on the same page. Cue quote number two: "Why not just kill them? I'll do it! I'll run up to Paris - bam, bam, bam, bam. I'm back before week's end. We spend the treasure. How is this a bad plan?" I suppose that isn't surprising since when they met Jacabo knew absolutely nothing about Edmond (not even his true name). The treasure wasn't the point. (There's a thought that could send me on a ramble!) He just knew that one moment he was looking at death, and the next moment his hope and future were restored.
I'm sure at times that grace felt like as much like fetter as much as it felt like a gift. But whether he understood or not. Whether he agreed or not. Jacabo was true to his word. He was Edmond's man forever.
There are days when I'm sure I share a thing or two with Jacabo. Endebted to a stranger (though I'm getting to know him more every day). Not always understanding the plan (or the point for that matter). Wearing different hats and having to wait for the whole picture to come together. But grateful every day for grace.
The moral of the story: You never know what the violinist is thinking on a Sunday morning. *wink* Thank goodness I can still play violin while my mind wanders on these God moments!