Les Mis… such incredible truth from the Gospel!
Jean Valjean makes a critical decision that sets the trajectory for the rest of his life. The French judicial system has defined him by his crime. He is 24601. A criminal. A prisoner. He receives parole. He steals again. But this time he receives grace and forgiveness from the bishop. The bishop re-humanizes ValJean. He offers him a new identity. Not as a thief, a prisoner, a criminal. But as forgiven, blessed, a human under grace.
And Valjean struggles to accept it. He knows he has a decision. “Who am I?” And in a beautiful scene of conversion, he tears up the papers that define him as 24601 and declares his new identity to the world. And in living out that identity throughout the rest of the story, his and other’s lives are blessed.
The obvious contrast is Javert. He is offered the same choice: to live as forgiven or…
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