The horror in Newtown, Connecticut this past Friday was so vivid and personal, we all still feel the hard dread of it. The expected chatter has started about guns, the shooter’s background, and how in the world anyone might be capable of such brutality. What are we supposed to do with something so senseless and with the big questions that surface?
The normal reaction is to blame or fix. We feel urged towards justice or to find some “silver lining” if only to gain relief from this shocking picture of a world where such dark acts are even possible. Can there be something redemptive to emerge from this craziness? Or, should we just distract ourselves with the next round of gun-control debates and bright-side platitudes?
Consider the following two responses. The first one is about taking some practical action, and the second, a call to think a little differently.
FIRST, CHOOSE A PRACTICAL RESPONSE:
A) Write a note of encouragement. Letters can be mailed to the school at:
Sandy Hook Elementary School
12 Dickenson Drive
Sandy Hook, CT 06482
Ordinary Heroes wants each family to receive hundreds of letters of encouragement.
B) Help another child that needs you.
After the outrage over this event subsides, tens of thousands of children will still die every day of problems that have ready solutions.
Today, as you wrestle with a sense of waste in this New England town, perhaps you might direct the urgency to children that can be saved. If you would like to sponsor a child through an organization which provides essentials to kids in poverty, click here for Compassion International. I trust this group implicitly.
SECOND, CONSIDER A BIGGER PICTURE:
Truth becomes bold-faced in times of crisis. Take some time to reflect on these seven truths, which we are prone to run past on a normal day.
1. Life is a daily gift.
2. There are no little people or places.
3. Every person matters.
4. Ultimately, right and wrong are not a matter of personal taste.
5. Crisis elevates great people and genuine compassion.
6. In grief, you lose fellowship but not relationship.
7. Americans still have plenty of common ground.
- Hope springs eternal in the human breast;
- Man never Is, but always To be blest:
- The soul, uneasy and confin’d from home,
- Rests and expatiates in a life to come.