It’s been a difficult couple of weeks for America. Shootings in Buffalo, Tulsa and Uvalde have shaken us to the very core of our beliefs. While any death by violence is tragic, I still can’t wrap my mind around what took place in Uvalde, Texas. My heart weeps as I type the word “children”… children ravaged by gunshots… and the horror of Sandy Hook all over again. Dear God… children.
I don’t want to think about the terror those children faced in their final moments. I cannot fathom the grief those parents are forced to face. I cannot imagine a more horrific life-event than living through such a brutal act done upon those that most parents would lay down their own lives to protect. Violence perpetrated upon the innocent. And I struggle… I struggle deeply… not to hate — to hate the one who would commit such a heinous act. To not want only justice… but vengeance.
I will not pretend to know how to solve the hate buried in so many hearts. Politicians can climb their soapboxes and spout their useless drivel to rile up their constituents, but anyone who believes they have the answers does not truly understand the real issue is deeply rooted in sin. Sure, we can ban certain weapons… we can place armed guards among our most vulnerable — and perhaps we should… but no person can rut out the evil in another person’s heart.
Folks, the evilness of Humanity must cause the heart of God to weep. If we ache over the results of sinful behavior and the destructiveness caused by evil; How much more must God? Perhaps it is in moments like this that we can best understand the breaking of Jesus’ heart as he wept over Jerusalem — of how he longed to gather its people into his arms in love and protection… but alas… they rejected and crucified him.
Jesus warned us. He said… “Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold…” (Matthew 24:12 NIV) and his words are an accurate description of society today. In a culture that often seems to celebrate what is evil, it is even more incumbent upon Christ followers to live as children of the Holy God. We must be the “Called Out Ones” of the King; living counter culture to the influences of the world around us.
Peter wrote, “Live such good lives among the pagans that, though they accuse you of doing wrong, they may see your good deeds and glorify God on the day he visits us.” 1 Peter 2:12 NIV In other words, how we live… matters. Scripture is clear… this world will continue to spiral deeper in its rebellion to God until, one day, his wrath will be poured out as the Righteous Judge and he will rule absolutely.
Until that day, we weep with those who grieve over the consequences of evil. We seek to serve those who have been downtrodden and abused. We offer compassion as Christ so often demonstrated. We pray for God’s will to be done on earth. And we remember that we are no longer of this world, because we belong to a new kingdom. C.S. Lewis wrote, “If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” — Mere Christianity
Events like Uvalde cause me to long for Heaven and the absence of evil. As we anticipate that future reality may we live as light in a sin darkened world. May we direct people toward the Savior while there is still time to be rescued. And may the Father pour out mercy, because… dear God… we need it.