Terrified survivors, family members, friends and American citizens in general are once again asking, “Why?” Of course, many are claiming that their ideologies or agendas have the answer. There are those who are “pro” this and “anti” that. If we would only do this or do that; if we would only ban guns, it would reduce crime and violence. And on goes the rhetoric.
I believe the late Rev. Ray Stedman — former pastor of Peninsula Bible Church and author of “What On Earth Is Happening?” — provides an excellent answer for the question “Why?” He says the reason is the elevation of self, the seeking of one’s interests above all others. Rev. Stedman adds that this kind of selfish cynicism pervades our society and has produced an avalanche of wickedness, lawlessness and lovelessness. We simply lack love, especially love for our fellow human being.
Pastor Stedman further states, “The overthrow of moral boundaries always destroys love. Those who feel they can live without moral boundaries invariably grow hard, callous and cynical. They become people who know the price of everything and the value of nothing. Their lives become an endless quest for new pleasures, new experiences, because that is the drug they use to numb the pain of their meaningless, empty existence.”
I am especially appreciative of President Barack Obama’s message of healing during this past Sunday evening prayer vigil in Aurora, Colo. He made it clear that he and his family, and America, were praying for Aurora. He comforted the grieving with Revelations 21:4, in which God promised “to wipe every tear from their eyes,” because the day is coming when “there will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain; for the former things are passed away.”
Until that day arrives, may we take responsibility for ourselves and love one another; and may we continue to pray as our Lord taught us, and “deliver us from evil”(Matthew 6:13). Amen.