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Robert Brack A Judge with Compassion

On Dec. 27, 2015 the Las Cruces Sun-News announced Federal Judge Robert Brack as the first recipient of the Sun-News Distinguished Resident Award. Brack, a man of faith and family, began his legal career in Clovis, N.M. as an attorney and state district judge.  In 2003 Brack was appointed by President George W. Bush to the U.S. District Court in Las Cruces.

As Judge Brack’s sister, I would like to share the inside story of the day he appeared before the Senate Judiciary Committee in Washington D.C. for possible confirmation as a federal judge.   During that particular session, the Senate had been refusing to confirm most of the President’s nominees.

At dawn that day Brack was walking the streets of Washington, wrestling with God about what he would speak before the committee, fully aware that the committee was primarily interested in only one thing, his “judicial philosophy.” Brack knew the judicial philosophy of the other nominees included no reference to God.

Brack’s philosophy was Micah 6:8, “The Lord has showed you O man, what is good and what the Lord requires of you: to do justice, to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.”  Would his Christian belief be acceptable and would he have holy boldness to speak these words of Scripture in a secular environment?

As Brack walked, he looked up and saw a billboard with the words of Joshua 1:7 written on it, “Only be strong and very courageous, that you may observe all the law commanded by Moses, do not turn from it to the right or left that you may have success wherever you go.” Brack received these words as from the Lord to him.

Later that day, the Senate committee met with all the nominees, but in a highly unusual maneuver, the committee only asked Brack and none of the others, one question, “What is your judicial philosophy? You guessed it.  Brack, filled with the Holy Spirit, stood up, quoted Micah 6:8 and then sat down.  Brack was immediately confirmed by the Senate.

Thirteen years later the Lord continues to confirm Brack as a compassionate Judge. His court is one of the busiest in America with most cases involving felony re-entry and deportation of people to Mexico. Even so, Brack personally meets with each defendant, seeing them as an individual family member, who after serving their time, will be returned to the border with no money, no job and no family. Bob asks, “What will become of them now?”

Bob and I grew up in a close family of five children. Bob has followed in our Dad’s footsteps with love of God and love of family as the driving force of their lives. Our Dad, Bill Brack, adopted the words of Jesus in Mt 22:37, “You shall love the Lord your God with all of your heart…”   This, the first and greatest commandment, became our family’s motto.  Everyday our Dad told my Mom and each of us, “I love you with all my heart.”

I am so proud of you, Brother Bob!  Ephesians 2:10 describes you, “… as God’s workmanship created in Messiah Jesus for good works which God prepared beforehand that you should walk in them.”