Monday, December 17, 2012

Thoughts On The School Shooting

Now that I have had a few days to let this tragedy sink in, I wanted to share my thoughts and get them "out of my head". I feel like I am carrying around this huge burden because I am a parent of a public school kindergartener.
For those of you who may not know, last Friday, a young man entered an elementary school in Conneticut and killed 20 kindergarten students and 6 adults. To say this makes me physically ill does not even begin to describe the depth of my emotions. I'm sad for these poor parents who have lost a little child in such a horrific senseless way. I'm sad for the students who lived yet now have to deal with the aftermath and post-traumatic stress issues that no one, especially a child, should have to deal with. I'm sad for the gunman's family who unfortunately now probably also will carry a stigma with them - and the fact that they also lost 2 family members. And then I'm angry. I'm angry that this could even happen. I'm angry that he could get into a school and have access to these children and teachers. I'm angry that people are focused on gun control issues right now instead of trying to deal with the issue of mental illness. Guns do NOT kill people...it's people who pull the trigger. It's the people with guns who decide how they use it. Clearly this young man has serious mental issues to go into a school and shoot a bunch of 5-6 year olds. Why was this not addressed and caught earlier...? Next, I'm afraid. I'm afraid that Chloe is going to find out about this tragedy. I'm afraid her innocence is going to be stripped from her too early. I'm afraid that if she does learn of this, that she will be afraid to go back to school - her favorite place in the world to go to right now! I'm afraid that if she does find out from peers at school, that she will not get the correct "version" and it will really mess her up. I was afraid to leave her at school this morning...and I stayed for a while talking to the guidance counselor about the shooting.
But in the midst of all of those emotions, I feel very at peace that if anything like that were to happen at my daughter's school that she would be protected to the millionth degree by her teacher and other faculty members. I know that they love her and those other kiddos as though they were their own. I have no doubt about that and there is a lot to be said there. I also feel very desperate for Jesus. Desperate for Jesus to come back and end all of these senseless sufferings in this world. Desperate for heaven and the perfection of it, and desperate for my children to not have to deal with all of this throughout their lives.
Thankfully we have a Savior who has promised to give us new mercies every morning (Lamentations). We have a Savior who has promised to give us grace that is sufficient (Corinthians). Gratefully, we have a Savior who has promised to bind up the broken-hearted (Isaiah). We also have a Savior who has promised that one day, for Christ followers, there will be no more tears, or sorrow (Revelation). And finally, we have a Savior who has promised to be our rock and our fortress. Think of that! He is our Rock - an ever present help in troubled times. He is not a pebble, not a stone, but a ROCK! When I think of a rock, I think of a giant unmoveable, unshakeable, steady and sturdy fixture. That, my friends is a promise that I need...a promise that God can't be moved by terrible circumstances when I can so easily be. He isn't shaken when I become shaken at the smallest of details and the largest at the same time. He is steady and unwavering while I am flipping around in life half the time like a wave out in the sea...
I am so incredibly thankful that my future is held by my Rock and my Fortress. My God and my Savior.

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