an open letter to the person that stole our car


Although I am fairly certain this will never be read by you – unless you’re the kind of guy (and let’s just shoot straight here, we’re assuming you’re a guy) who boosts cars by night and reads mommy blogs by day – but I kind of have to reach out somehow because our lives have been entangled like this and I have no other way of doing so.

I am probably just projecting my own desire to hear your side of the story, but I rather like to think you’d want to hear mine. The car you stole has been mine since college. My dad bought it for me by proxy from a family out in Oregon, and then the summer after my semester in Paris the two of us road-tripped in it across the country, ending up back at my school in the fall. My husband DanO and I took both our first and second babies home from the hospital in that car. I know, you’re impressed, right? You should have seen the Tetris game we had to play to get two infants in the back seat of that sucker. But it suited us so well. Until it didn’t.

We had stopped driving that car as a family (the one you stole) when we brought home the minivan in December. In fact, we didn’t even notice it gone until more than 24 hours after you took it. Unfortunately for us, we hadn’t yet taken out the high-end umbrella stroller we sprang for when our oldest was little and we were traveling a lot. I hope that doesn’t get tossed into a dumpster somewhere; it’s a really nice one. Could you at least give it to someone who could use it?

And let’s just talk about that someone who could use it thing, shall we? When the police were over here on Sunday (which, by the way, our oldest thought was super fun to have the ‘poweece officers’ in our living room) they enlightened us a lot about the goings-ons of car theft. Seems like you (and perhaps your buddies) weren’t even interested in the car itself, given that 9 blocks away you stole another one of the exact same model that same night. Best we can tell, you wanted it for parts. Which actually makes our past break-in make a lot more sense. I don’t even remember when it was now, maybe last spring(?), a window on that same car was smashed (see above) and someone stole the dashboard console. They straight jacked our speedometer. At first we were like who does that?! but now we are starting to understand that stealing car parts or cars for parts is kind of a thing.

The police expect to find it up on blocks somewhere in the area in the next few weeks.

For now we are more than capable of getting along with one car. We are also blessed to have auto insurance that covers theft with a pretty small deductible  so in case you were at all worried: we will be fine. We really will. So fine, in fact, that when we saw it missing from in front of our house on Sunday morning, we just kept driving and went to church as we’d been planning. What do you do, really? You march on, you thank God you are able to afford the insurance and that you own another car that is warm and fits your whole family.

Once we got to church that morning,  we were still raw from that ‘socked in the gut’ feeling of violation that comes with theft. (We go to church near here and love the energetic, diverse body of Christ that meets there on Sundays. Woodland Hills Church. You should check it out.) The morning announcements included informing us that there had been recent break-ins into cars in our church parking lot. There DanO and I are, sitting in the audience and being told about the potential for more crime. It was enough to make me want to jump up and run outside to make sure our other car was still there. The announcer said that the best thing we can do is lock our cars and not leave valuables in them. “The people that broke in,” she said “have unsurpassable worth as human beings made in the image of God, but we don’t want to tempt them by leaving iPads on our seats.”

There it was. Did you hear it? Because I sure did.

I’ll be honest. The first thoughts that went through my mind after realizing that you took our car were not favorable toward you. But literally moments later, I’m sitting in church and the children’s pastor reminds me of your unsurpassable worth as a human being.

So, that’s really what this letter is about. When it boils down, I don’t much care why you took our car or what you do with our Maclaren stroller. I care that you know that you have unsurpassable worth as a person made in the image of God for whom Christ died. I care that you know that I think that about you, too. I don’t really know what it takes to get mixed up in whatever you’re mixed up in, but I do know that if I could, I would look you in your face and tell you that I love you. And that God loves you.

Take care.

:: :: :: :: :: ::

“Jesus told us each and every one has unsurpassable worth; that all alone they are worth the price He paid.” -Troy Livesay

27 Responses to “an open letter to the person that stole our car”

  1. Jill

    I hope it helps you to know that this is totally the kind of response I would expect from you, because this is the example have set for the world, to be real, to be gracious, to be a godly woman. Sorry for your loss, thank you for your mercy.

    • Leslie

      I am new to this blog, but WOW what an intro, and WOW to this particular comment. Thank you both :)

  2. Katie

    I know I don’t comment much anymore, but I am always here reading. And this? Is why. You reflect God’s grace in a way I strive to.

  3. NatalieJanette

    I needed to hear this so much today. Really. You have no idea. Can I screenshot your words and use as my phone wallpaper? No distribution, I promise. xoxox

  4. Susannah

    Oh no! I’m so sorry your car got stolen! You’re so right about the theif being of supreme worth in the eyes of our Saviour. Let’s pray that he (or she) recognizes that someday and turns his (or her) life over to our amazing Lord!

  5. Kacia

    I’m still here. :) And this made me get out from behind my phone and hop on my computer.

    This post is just another example of why I look up to you so.

    your heart shouts with love through your words and actions. So thankful for you.

  6. Emily D.

    Girl you are a freakin’ rockstar. And I feel your love, your grace, the mercy you extend through your words. Thank you for being real…for being you! xoxo.

  7. Kim

    “You should check it out” Most excellent telling him to check out your church. And you have much more grace than me. It would have taken me months to get to this place, if I did at all.

  8. anna {girlwithblog}

    *looking at the ground* Can we be better friends? I wanna learn from you and drink coffee. *scuffs toe*

    ps – May your own words settle nicely into your heart as a balm. A stolen car is a big thing.

  9. Elaine

    Wow, just wow. You have a truly forgiving heart, Allison!

    I had a car stolen from the parking lot where I worked at a retail store, back when I was in college. Frankly, I was kinda glad to see the car “go” but that is such a terrible feeling of someone taking something like that from you. Sorry you are having to deal with this. xo

  10. Jenny

    Wow. Just wow. Your words brought me to tears. You are an amazing God loving woman, and an inspiration. Please don’t stop sharing your life. I’m so sorry about your car, but it is just a car, right? P.S. I am moving back to the Twin Cities in October and I secretly wish I’ll run into you at a store somewhere. :) oops, guess it isn’t a secret anymore. Ha.

  11. Elisabeth

    I understand. We had a car stolen. It was hot-wired outside our door, joyridden, wrecked, and up on blocks before we even knew it was missing. Woke up to a stranger knocking on the door with our info on the registration card, saying, “Is your car missing?” “No,” I said. But he found it in a park behind trees when he was jogging. It was totalled.

    Fast-forward a few years, and I’m back-and-forthing with an insurance co. for payment of my minivan that was totalled last week, thanks to someone running a red light. And I’m wondering if they’ll let me keep the rental car long enough to attend the funeral of a friend who died of cancer this week.

    Thanks for the reminder of the worth of each life, and to be humble instead of claiming that we deserve better, as we are all criminals in God’s eyes. All have sinned. All of us are lawbreakers.

  12. Nick A

    In part, you could blame the Car Allowance Rebate System (aka “Cash for Clunkers”) for placing increased stress on the used car market, and indirectly on the used car parts market.


Leave a Reply

  • (will not be published)

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>