I Was In School; And You Let Me Die – Jesus

I Was In School; And You Let Me Die – Jesus May 25, 2022

Another mass school shooting has happened. The reported numbers are 19 children and 2 adults dead at this writing. The fact that this week we celebrate the Feast of the Ascension makes the feeling of divine absence more poignant. “How long, O Lord!” Well, I am fed up with it! I am no longer asking God to keep our children safe at school or to keep innocent people safe. I am done asking for that. Today, I turn my eyes to God and ask something different.

School Safety

I remember when everyone thought the key to keeping our children safe in school was to put cops in schools. After Parkland, it was painfully obvious police do not keep children safe. Last year, the police shot and killed a student in a nearby high school. The School Resource Officer did nothing for the safety of the students.  People claim teachers should now be armed while on the job. Yesterday, the SRO was outgunned because the semi-automatic AR type rifle carried by the suspect was more deadly. I can hear people now claiming the police need more military style weaponry.

How long, O Lord, will this kind of thinking continue? How long, O Lord, will the lie be told and believed?

Good Wishes

I am tired of thoughts and prayers being the go-to slogan of our civil religion. Lowering the flag on government buildings is only a sign of mourning. As a pastor, I have only worked one school shooting. I handed out bottles of water and talked to some of the parents. I relayed information to those who did not hear the police announcements. The new Director of Schools ran to his office while I and other pastors ran to help.

How long, O Lord, will we put up with leaders willing to do nothing except say nice words?

Church And School

There is only so much a church or school can do to help the most troubled youth. We cannot do much except place a band-aid on issues related to poverty. Jesus says, “I was hungry and you did and you gave me no food, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink…” Jesus does not say, “pray for the hungry, the thirsty, the unwelcome stranger, or the prisoner.” I say pray only if you cannot do anything else. But do everything you can first. Our leaders are effective at only transferring wealth to the wealthy. They will be judged.

We need to find leaders who will do something about mental health, poverty, the lack of health care, and the hard work of preventing violence. The Presidents claim it is “the gun lobby.” Nonsense. If you purchase an air rifle there is a form to join the NRA in the box. The “gun lobby” are the weapons manufacturers. And their greed is insatiable.

How long, O Lord, until we stop the bleeding so there can be healing?

 Telling The Truth

The church is complicit by sitting on the sideline in this debate. Our lay people are more concerned about bringing guns to church instead of Bibles. Our church leaders want big numbers in the pews and collection plate to “do ministry.” Jesus was shot in school yesterday. Before that we let him die in a supermarket. And so on.

The church needs to start talking about the children who have been born. What are we doing for them in the name of Jesus to glorify the Creator?

How long, O Lord, until we open our eyes?

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