Once again our nation is reeling from yet another act of senseless violence, though it made perfect sense to Nikolas Cruz. And thus my question this morning:
Why, oh Lord, why did this happen?
There are those who will answer my question, but with the wrong answer. “It’s the gun laws, rather, the lack of gun laws. If we just ban those nasty guns, this would not ever happen again.” I just don’t think this is the answer. Chicago has the strictest gun laws and the senseless human violence continues every day.
“It’s that he wasn’t treated fairly. He did not have the same opportunities as others. If he had just received what he was entitled to, this would not have happened.” Well, he may not have been treated fairly, but many others haven’t been treated fairly but they did not go out and kill innocent people. So, how is this the answer?
“Well, they took prayer and the Bible out of the schools and this is the result!” Do you really think that there is a “Prayer Void” or “Bible Void”, like a black hole, that exists in public schools? I know countless students, teachers, support staff and administrators that cover their schools in prayer every day, and though they do not “read the Bible” in class, these Disciples of Jesus live out those words every day. So, I don’t think that is the reason nor the answer to my question. Besides, like the saying goes, “As long as there are tests, students will pray.”
“Video games and TV violence is the reason! If Silicon Valley and Hollywood did not glorify violence, this would not have happened.” If so, why isn’t everyone who plays video games and watches violent TV out there killing the innocents? Mind you, I’m not suggesting that it doesn’t desensitize people’s conscience. But eliminating violent games and TV will not eliminate this threat.
They are coming out of the woodwork, from under rocks, all espousing reasons for this horrible act of human violence. Their reasons will go on ad nauseam and yet, there will be another shooting at a church, school, community center–anywhere people gather. So what is the answer to this burning question that oozes out of both my faith and my heart?
To be quite honest, I cannot accept the “pat” answers, but I admit that I do not have the answer. Honestly, I do not know that there is an “answer”. Perhaps I, along with many others should ask a different question other than the “why” question. I’m simply thinking out loud right now because of this ooze of “why”. Maybe the question that everyone who professes to be “Christian” (perhaps I should say ‘allegedly’ Christian) should be asking is: “What now? What should we do now?” This is a question for which I do have an answer. And here is my answer to “that” question.
You need to stop be consumers of the services of the church. Sorry, Jack, your local church does NOT exist for you. You need to become the producers of what the church is really about; and that’s the Kingdom of God. Quit living out a small story and step into the story of the Kingdom where God is in the business of redeeming and restoring human lives. Stop spending so much of your budget on what happens at a 911 address (that means building/campus).
Quit pointing out where everyone else is wrong and admit that somewhere you are broken, too. Get to know the people around you, without offering judgment against them. Get out of, way out of your comfort zones.
Jesus wasn’t comfortable in what He did for you on that Cross, so why should you get to be comfortable in what you do for Jesus!
Quit whining about us needing to become ‘again’ a “Christian nation” and understand that as Disciples of Jesus we are “aliens and foreigners” in this land; God’s true people have always been “foreigners” wherever they lived. Show me one verse that says God wants to establish a “Christian Nation” and I will show you a hundred verses where Jesus came to establish the Kingdom of God! Let’s start doing something, just one thing at a time, that helps others, including yourself, to be restored to the image of God. Live out Grace the way Jesus lived out Grace.
I just don’t know the “Why, oh Lord, why did this happen?” But I am now reminded that even with my doubt and questions, God is still working to establish His Kingdom, that place where His will is “done on earth as it is in heaven.”