The article noted above was sent to me by a colleague post the events surrounding the Boston Bombing. It refers to other acts of violence which had rocked the security and well being of families living in the Washington-Metro region for weeks on end. The Sniper. Below is my response – poured out from my head and more directly, from my heart.
This article is interesting and too reminiscent for me,as certainly I had little ones during that time myself. Both kids in preschool school right by the bike path at the edge of a wood. In that very terror-filled time, my faith was fledgling and I was on edge all the time. Yes, I did worry about shots taken through my car windows at the gas station or through my bedroom window.
What I have learned since then is:
1) God is a better parent than I am and if I believe what I say I do, I must trust in Him to protect me and my loved ones, but also to help me make sense of evil that, like madness, never sleeps.
2) God promises in the book of Romans, to take the bad and use it for good. In the wake of all the recent disasters we as a world and a country have experienced, we see time and time again the human heart and will rising to the occasion. God is love, and He can be reflected in us all if we just choose to yield to His proddings, purpose and power in our lives.
3) I am not afraid of death, as I am confident that when I am absent from my body, I will be present with the Lord. That is not to say I do not worry about the family and friends I hold in my heart, but because evil actions and results are occurring at an escalated pace in our world, it spurs me on all the more to share the hope I have in salvation through Jesus with them…that this life on earth is fleeting; good and bad, but life in eternity is forever. I want to make sure that those I love, and even those I do not know yet, hear the truth of what Jesus offers and did for mankind through his death on the cross. The eternal balance to good and evil is this, that God cannot be mocked and though we may or may not see justice meted out on the people who perpetrate these evil actions that hurt others, I also am reminded that God says, Revenge is mine….and He will see to it that the unrepentant are punished, forever.
If the wage of sin is death, but the hope of eternal life can be found in Jesus Christ, then what we need to do is pray for the hearts and minds of these people who are apart from God and who choose to hurt others. We cannot legislate morality, but we can pray for changed hearts and minds in all of mankind. A spiritual choice that would affect whether they choose to love or hate their fellow human, as well as effect where people will spend eternity.
I choose to respond to these tragedies in this way – pray for those who are hurt and pray for those who hurt them. Psalm 34:18 says, “The LORD draws close to the broken-hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.”
In this ever-growing “global” community we live in, I determine to be the difference I want to see in others. God gives us free will – which is why evil is present in this world in the first place. But the wisdom of man is God’s folly. I thank God that he sent His one and only son to pay the wage of death for mankind, if only mankind would choose to accept the gift.The gift of God is eternal life, offered to all. Unfortunately, the gift is accepted only be a few.