An Innocent Man

An Innocent Man

Imagine returning home from work one day to find your world completely shattered. Michael Morton doesn’t have to imagine.  When he left for his office one day in August 1986, his wife and son were still asleep after a late-night birthday celebration. Michael returned that afternoon to a home encircled by police tape and discovered that he was the prime suspect in the brutal murder of his wife. 

Michael was an ordinary guy.  He had no record, no motive and the circumstantial evidence against him was sketchy… innocent until proven guilty, right? Not this time.  The sheriff had his sights set on Michael, and to his horror Michael was convicted of killing his wife.  

After being sentenced to life in prison, the first words out of his mouth were, “I did not do this.” Michael spent the next twenty-five years repeating those words over and over to anyone who would listen. But his listening audience continued to shrink—friends, neighbors, family members and co-workers all turned their backs on him. Most painful of all, the chasm between him and his son grow with each passing year.  

An innocent man, convicted of killing his beloved wife, abandoned by nearly everyone… and sentenced to life in prison.  Can you imagine?  How can such a story be anything but a tragedy? 

Well a survey of the Bible reveals a lot of innocent men, languishing in prison, apparently forgotten.  But they weren’t forgotten by God who was able to transform even injustice into an incredible redemption.  God redeemed Michael’s story, too.  

Next weekend at Chapel Hill during all three of our worship services, Michael Morton will share his incredible story.  I will interview him during my sermon and then the community will have two opportunities to hear Michael’s full story.  On Sunday, February 21st at 6:30pm, we will hear his spiritual journey; how he found Jesus in a prison cell.  On Monday night at 6:00, we will learn how the legal system went very, very wrong and put an innocent man behind bars.  (If you know of anyone in the legal profession, Monday night is not to be missed… but you need to register soon! Seating is Limited.)

You might have heard Michael’s story on “Sixty Minutes.”  Well, next weekend you will meet him in person.  Bring your friends and come hear the remarkable story of God’s faithfulness.

Pastor Mark