33“‘When a foreigner resides among you in your land, do not mistreat them. 34The foreigner residing among you must be treated as your native-born. Love them as yourself, for you were foreigners in Egypt. I am the Lord you God.” (Leviticus 19:33-34, The Jesus Bible)
When I was on here two days ago, I posted a more upbeat message than what you are going to read on here today. That was before news broke of another mass shooting. That was before news broke that this was another shooting in a school. That was before news broke that this was a school of elementary aged students. That was before news broke that this shooting was at a small Christian academy.
If this most recent act of evil did not shake you to your core, then perhaps all hope of a revival, of turning the tide of our societal depravity around, it is all gone. Both of my older children have attended Christian schools much like the shooter walked into on Monday morning and began taking lives indiscriminately. So, at least to me, this recent attack on the fabric of our society struck a different nerve. This is a uniquely American problem. No other Christian nation, no other advanced society is suffering from mass killings like we as Americans are. And it has to make you wonder why. It also has to make you wonder why a former student of this Christian school had such resentment from their time there that they would walk into that place of solitude and target young children to murder.
I have seen a lot of death this last year on the streets of Savannah, GA. I know what bullet riddled bodies look like. I have heard the death gurgle of young men shot in the head as their brain matter oozes out around their shattered skull. The thought of having to see that in children disturbs me and I hope that these types of killings never come to the city of Savannah. Yesterday I spoke to my Watch about the Nashville law enforcement’s excellent response to the school and how quickly they eliminated the threat. I reminded them of the reason most of us joined law enforcement, to stand up to pure evil such as what happened in Nashville. I do not want to see another school shot up. Enough is enough.
I am not a fan of guns. I have never owned one other than my service weapon. I try to stand and live by my faith that Jesus and God are enough, that this life is temporary and this world is not our home. So an early exit on this side of eternity would be welcome. What I do not want is for another child to suffer at the hands of such evil. I would love for assault rifles to be banned, again, but I realize that we have woven these weapons of war quickly into the fabric of our society and there would be no way to remove them from the hands of all our 2nd-Amendment-loving hard chargers. What I pray for is an awakening like Australia experienced in the late 90s when one mass shooting inspired the entire nation to give up their assault weapons, and a ban on such guns has been in place ever since. But even if assault rifles were not available, and Americans just had access to hunting rifles for hunting, shotguns for home defense, and pistols for personal defense, that would still be enough for the devil to infect the heart and soul of a wayward individual and allow them to carry out an attack much like The Covenant School incident.
Stricter gun buying laws would not have prevented this recent massacre either, as the shooter had no previous interactions with police. But from what I have read in the AP News, it seems like the parents knew something was off with their child, as they tried to keep guns away from them, but from one article I read, the parents have stated that the shooter had “hidden” the small arsenal she had amassed from her parents. So perhaps if the parents had alerted the right authorities, the shooter may have been flagged from “legally” buying these weapons if Tennessee supported red-flag laws. But, let us be honest with ourselves, this only prevents legal purchases of firearms. A motivated individual can easily find a way to purchase a gun from the streets.
All of this just slows down or complicates a shooter from getting their hands on weapons. None of this really prevents the issue at hand. And the issue at hand is what caused this adult to have such animosity for a Christian school that they walked in there and put bullets through the bodies of innocent children? Why was a Christian school not the one place this individual remembered as the bright spot to their life, the place they felt safe, the place they felt loved like no other place they ever spent time in? We maybe will never have a glimpse into the shooters motivation as to why she chose this school. The easy answer is that there are dark forces working in this world. There are still demons possessing those who lack the faith to repel such possessions. They were at work in Jesus’ time, you would be a fool to think they are not here today. So perhaps, that is what we are dealing with in each of these attacks, the devil at work every chance he gets.
Or perhaps it is the hard truth, and that is where the verse at the start of this post comes in. Scroll back up and reread it. From the third book in the Bible, God instructs His people to love the “foreigner among you as yourself”. For the Israelites were foreigners in a foreign land. Americans are foreigners in a foreign land. We are all foreigners in a foreign land. Our native home is Heaven. So we are to love everyone as we love ourself. Do we live by that creed as Chritians? Is that the light we are shining from the top of this hill? Is that the essence of the salt we use to preserve our faith and flavor our society? Or are we standing at the top of the hill with hardened hearts, and a light affixed to our weapon of choice. I want love to win, but I am beginning to lose faith in a true revival where the single act of love can prevail.
So after all this, I wish I had an answer. But until I reach that point, all I can recommend is that we pray. Pray for the return of Jesus Christ, so the evils in this world will melt away and we faithful Christians can step into eternity. Pray for the families of those six beautiful lives lost. Pray for the parents of those three innocent children brutally murdered. Mourn with them. Mourn for this country. And when we emerge from this time of mourning, it is time for action. There is no time to waste. Enough is enough.