There is another shooting just now on the news. This one just a few miles from my house at a grocery store. Earlier this week it was at two Atlanta-area spas.
A police officer was killed in one of the shootings, a father of 7. When the protectors are unprotected, then we all feel vulnerable. And the pain stretches to families and friends of the victims and the communities they came from.
And like you, I’m angry and sad at the same time, and a little numb.
Why ask why?
Reporters are already talking to his friends, his neighbors, his girlfriend. They’ll push microphones in front of the parents face, still stricken with shock that their son could be the one behind this.
The President will speak some words of comfort and then throw in a few pieces of meat because the high road is an unfamiliar path.
Politicians will weigh in, fingers pointing and chests puffed. One calling for tough guys to unite and the other calling for the government to just “do something.”
Thoughts and prayers will pour in from around the country and we’ll care until the next shock.
Flags will hang at half-staff for a few days, overlapping the last tragedy and perhaps the next tragedy.
While we are wringing our hands, we are trying to find some motivation. The anti-immigration crowd will secretly hope for an ISIS connection. The secularists hope it will be a church goer. The left will hope it will be a white supremacist. The right will hope it will be someone who has shown Antifa sympathy. The anti-gun people will try to pinpoint the narrow way the shooter got his hands on a weapon and then broad-brush the other 100 million gun owners who would never dream of going on a rampage. The pro-gun people will wish there had been a protector in the crowd who could have stopped the rampages.
What’s a Christian to do ?
To be honest, I’m helpless in all of this. And so are you. We’ll comment on Facebook or shake our heads at the office tomorrow, offering our opinions. But really, none of us have an answer.
We were told throughout the Moral Majority days that you cannot legislate morality. There is no legislation that will stop this. With 300 million guns in American’s homes, cars, basements and attics, there is simply no way to seize them without a revolution. We cannot arm enough mental health specialists to eliminate all the crazy. We cannot monitor all the conversations or social media and hope to spot a sign and incarcerate them “just in case.”
This is when Bible verses like this jump out,
“You must realize, however, that in the last days difficult times will come.”
This is not a resignation to fatalism, but a call to the reality of the times. It’s moments like this when people of faith need to rise to the occasion by falling on our knees.
If you want to call me weak, go ahead. But I’m praying because everything else we’re trying just isn’t working and that’s not such a bad place to start.