I sat at my desk Friday trying to process the shocking news as it came in while attempting to stay focused on my work while deadlines approached. As I tried to imagine the pain and grief the parents and families were feeling a sense of anger came over me wondering how we allowed ourselves to get to this point.
We heard an emotional President give a heartfelt address which pierced his own eyes with tears. Parents went home from work that night and held their children so tightly, thankful that they were still together. With heavy hearts they offered prayers for those who just hours earlier had their children taken from them. The media gave complete coverage to this horrific massacre and all too soon began speculating as to what the cause may be. Only hours later turning it into a gun control debate, as if the government can prevent this kind of evil.
I logged onto my facebook later that night to see so many people offering prayer and condolences, but also many comments filled with confusion. So many asking how could this happen, what is wrong with people, how is such cruelty possible, why innocent kindergartners?
This shooting was horrific, tragic, a senseless massacre of innocent victims, but this seems to only be a symptom of a greater problem. When we push so hard to remove God from our society, whether it’s the Ten Commandments in a court house, nativity displays in public buildings or prayer in schools do we also not realize that with this comes consequences. That when we voluntarily say no to having God as a part of our lives the society will also reflect it and will truly become a God-less nation.
The media will continue to speculate and politicize as to why this happened, but I am afraid they won’t get it right. Unless they go much deeper, the root of the problem will never be discussed and unfortunately events like this will continue to happen. It is time we realize that respect for human life at all its stages has been lost; the unborn child in the womb, the kindergartner at school, the homeless and forgotten, the elderly and terminally ill.
We are truly living in a culture of death and at times have become numb to so much of what we hear. The immediate reaction is to call for gun control, higher security, and pat downs, but how can we expect children to be safe in schools if they are not even safe in the womb or in their own homes? Blessed Mother Teresa was prophetic in saying, “If we accept that a mother can kill even her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another? “
Now just days away from Christmas when we celebrate Christ coming as a child to restore humanity, let us make an effort to bring light and life to a culture which knows not. The transformation begins in our own hearts, recognizing first our own dignity and the dignity of those whom God has placed in our midst. Unfortunately these events are easily forgotten as we go back to our daily routines, but perhaps this time we can strive to make a difference in our homes, churches and places of work. As we look at the Babe in the manger may we too exemplify the greatest gift of all, the gift of life!