Shitty’s Story

There’s a remarkable story I read a few weeks ago from Kent Nerburn’s The Wolf at Twilight: An Indian Elder’s Journey Through a Land of Ghosts and Shadows.

The young man’s real name is Marvin. He got drunk and was arrested for taking part in a bank robbery, if I recall correctly. His dad Orv confessed to the crime and went to jail for eight years instead of Marvin.

Why did he do it? He’d been through the brutalities of boarding school, which were indeed unspeakably awful for Indians. He knew jail wouldn’t diminish him. He didn’t want his son to go to jail because he’d come out a different and worse person.

Orv and his friends believed the courts didn’t care who went to jail for the crime. They just wanted another Indian.

When Nerburn asked why Marvin was called Shitty, someone said if your dad had gone to jail for you, wouldn’t that be kind of shitty?

What a sacrifice for Orv to make! The obvious parallel is Christ on the cross taking our punishment for us. To be frank, we’re all shitty sinners.

But who of us would be willing to go to jail for several years in the place of a son or other family member?

Romans 5:6-10–For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die: yet peradventure for a good man some would even dare to die. But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet
sinners, Christ died for us. Much more then, being now justified by his blood, we shall be saved from wrath through him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by his life.

Explore posts in the same categories: Christian Life, Salvation, Thoughts from John


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