The smell of chlorine still lingered about me. I finished swimming around 9:30pm and was in my area by 10. It’s pizza night! I called my brother to find out where he was, they had taken the path with the lights. He asked whether he should come by to meet me up, but I knew I’d be brief.
Still on the phone to him, bantering as per usual, I clamped my phone between my ear and shoulder as you do when you need to be hands free.
Slipped my card in
Typed my pin in
Pressed the button for £20, or £30
Was about to rea-
BAM BAM BAM
“Ahhh, the machine has taken your card, **BAM BAM BAM** You shouldn’t use this machine!”
I glanced down at the machine. It looked pretty much the same as it usually does. The caffofall baffled me slightly.
Arm around me, banging the screen making it glitch, he was warning me, talking to me, distracting me.
Meanwhile I peeped my brothers from a distance coming towards us slowly, still on the phone, listening. A lady who saw the ongoings shouted at the boys, claiming they took my money. The other guy had taken it. I looked over at the cash point. Another guy, similar domineer to the first; white, black shirt, my height, snap back, hovered by the ATM, put his card in, pressed some buttons. She shouted, they shouted, she shouted, “He took your money! I saw him take your money out from the machine!” She asked him to show me his hand – a wad of cash – not my cash, I thought, I only pressed for £20 or £30! There was a smaller amount at the tip of his fingers, that’s my money.
As I watched everything unfold I blanked out for a moment and asked God if all of this was true, help me to forgive these people.
I came back to where I was and saw the guys running off and turn the corner. My brothers were with me by this point.
I was just so baffled. Why? At my local atm. I use this cash machine all the time. I just got mugged!?
Still a bit shaken up, moreso confused, I decided we take out money from another cash point. I wanted to see what it would come up as on my statements so they’d be a clear distinction and nothing to dispute – that was God’s wisdom right there. I had forgotten how much I wanted to take out the first time, so I thought I’d just opt for £20.
We walked on towards the pizza shop. The lady was standing by the bus stop. “I wasn’t going to say anything at first, I thought I didn’t want to get involved but I saw the guy take your money from the cash point”. She then went on to say I should call the police and my bank.
The police asked me to go back to the shop connected to the ATM. They gave me a few codes, told them roughly the timings etcetera and based on how long I had been on the phone to my brother for.
That evening made me hold my bag differently and keep my eyes sharp. Though I was baffled I wasn’t physically hurt and I had to praise God for that. But the guy’s arm was around me… as if to be friendly. They played me and they won. On this side of the veil.
Vengeance is not mine but the Lord’s to repay, I thought. I can’t do anything to you. You’re anonymous now. I paint faces all the time but you frazzled me so much I can only remember the colour of your skin and basic facial contours.
But God knows you. And He knows the sin they committed against me and ultimately against Him. I also know the sins I have committed against God also, and so I have no hatred towards them only empathy.
I just prayed for their consciouses and I still do. We all need Christ.