Wow! Can you believe it? Even if you can, I was astounded! I could not believe my luck! Out of around one hundred and fifty people I was chosen by lottery to serve for the next six months on the grand jury of my county. I had you going there for a minute, didn’t I? Twenty people were selected to serve by drawing their name out of a drum similar to the ones used to draw bingo numbers. By the time the eighteenth juror was chose I was feeling pretty relieved. We were down to two names…it felt like I was almost home free. BUT I was wrong. Number nineteen was me.
I don’t begrudge serving, but jury duty is something I take extremely serious. I’m not power-hungry and do not relish deciding the fate of fellow citizens. It stresses me to the point of physical and mental exhaustion.
I’m sure this will be a learning experience, because grand jury is unlike the civil and federal trial juries I’ve served on in the past. This jury only determines if there is enough evidence to indict a suspect and send them to trial. Hopefully this won’t be as emotionally taxing as the trial juries I’ve served on were.
Before yesterday I had no concept of what a grand jury does. In what amounted to data overload my fellow jurors and I were given an overview of our duties during this session of court. During the first week of February we will meet again to hear the prosecution side only of approximately forty cases. After reviewing the evidence we will decide by vote if there is enough evidence to send those cases to trial. Twelve of the twenty jurors must vote yes to indited. We’ve been told this process will take only one day. This will be repeated during the first week of each month.
Part of my duty over the next six months is to serve on a committee who will visit and inspect the police stations, jails and fire stations in our county. Our committee will make recommendations for upgrade changes that need to be made in these facilities. Three other committees inspect schools, roads, and public buildings.
This service should prove to be interesting. I believe God has allowed me to be part of this jury for a purpose beyond the obvious, because He is in everything pertaining to my life. I don’t pretend to know what that purpose is, but I pray others see Jesus in me.
Until next time…
And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen. Matthew 6:13