In the meantime, Ed completed his semi-formal, systematic treatise to Bus, and mailed it to Ted. Ted took it to Bus to read:
When you die, you will stand before the Judge (God) who will meet out justice to you. But, the Judge will allow you to be defended by a Public Defender, the one and only Jesus Christ, whom God is more than willing to supply for free. If you accept Christ as your lawyer, His job will be to represent you before the Judge. Christ will plead for mercy for you.
Therefore, do not attempt to represent yourself or plead your own case. The Judge is too tough. Your part is to plead guilty. You have broken the Law, and a broken Law must be satisfied, as you know. Jesus knows the Law really well, and He has never lost a case! Jesus offers a unique way to accomplish both justice and mercy for you, Bus. He died for your sins, and He wants you to spend Eternity with Him."
Ed added a personal note: "Bus, my good friend, I know this fellow, Jesus, personally, and I know He can save your neck, just as he has saved mine. He pled my case before the Judge, and I was forgiven of my sins, and am promised Eternal life with Him. You can trust Him, too, Bus. More than anything else in this world, I want to have a reunion with you when my time comes to face the Judge. Give it a try. You have nothing to lose, and Heaven to gain."
Helen told us later that Bus was crying by the time he got to the end of the letter from Ed. He got out of his chair, found the drawing his grandchild had made of the boat, and hung it on their apartment door for all of his neighbors to see. Then, he called Janie, and said, "Honey, your grandfather just got in the boat."
Smith is a writer who lives at Edgewood Summit.