In the 1980s, Aileen Wuornos became an infamous serial killer. She was born in 1956; her parents were violent, and they had a tumultuous marriage. Her dad was arrested, then he joined the army, and she never met him. He was later convicted of rape, and hanged himself.
Aileen’s mom abandoned her. Her grandfather raised her, and abused her. This horrific treatment made her an extremely angry person, and she probably suffered from a personality disorder. She had sex with her own brother, and with other boys (at age 11), for spare change. She used the money to buy drugs. She was raped, and she became pregnant at age 14. The baby was adopted out before she ever even saw it; and, of course, she received no counseling.
She ran away, and later she was kicked out of the house. She became a prostitute, and she abused alcohol and drugs, and attempted suicide many times. She became a lesbian, and she and her partner lived like Nomads. She was guilty of robbery, grand larceny, and twelve counts of murder. She went to prison at age 34, and she eventually asked for the death sentence. She was executed in 2002 at the age of 46. She never figured out why her life didn’t work.
When she was in prison, she constantly read the Bible. She believed in God, and in hell. In trying to make things right with God, she listed her many transgressions in a journal, and wrote about how she was always heading further into evil. She admitted to many sexual sins, hate, violence, and an uncontrolled temper.
She wrote, “Dear Lord Jesus, I know I’ve done some wicked things in my life, and I know I deserve the rot of hell… I need to bring myself to your throne, begging, if you’d forgive me for all the overwhelming evil I’ve done in this world… “God, forgive me and bring me home eternal ever more.”
I’ll make two observations:
1) I am blessed because I’ve never been subjected to the abuse that Aileen suffered as a child. In an environment like that, an with our fleshly sin nature, any of us could lash out with behavior like Aileen’s, or worse.
2) Yet, through all of life’s woes, I believe that Aileen felt the presence of the Holy Spirit. Although we don’t know what’s in another person’s heart, I believe that her contrition was sincere, and that she was a true believer. Who among us couldn’t say, “Dear Lord Jesus, I know I’ve done some wicked things in my life, and I know I deserve the rot of hell?” That’s why Christ died on the cross–for all the wicked things that all of us have done. We deserve to rot in hell for our sins, but Christ’s perfect sacrifice atoned for our sins. I believe that I’ll see Aileen in heaven some day.