Responding to Tragedy
I woke up early this morning to the horrible news coming out of Las Vegas of what is thought to be the worst mass shooting in the history of our country. When these tragedies take place we certainly feel sad for those involved, but it’s also hard as we try to understand why such things take place. God does not cause such horrible acts, but the freedom that allows us to do wonderful things for one another is used by some people to do evil. Peter wrote, “Live as free people, but do not use your freedom as a cover-up for evil; live as God’s slaves. Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor” (1 Peter 2:16-17, NIV 2011).
I have not yet heard from all of my friends who live in Las Vegas, but one of my best friends who lives there has already said that he has seen hope in the number of people who are looking for ways to help. The same freedom of action that some people use for evil, we have the power to use for good even as we respond in the face of senseless tragedy. Here’s my takeaway from this morning: let’s all look for opportunities this week to do good and to be kind to others. The Apostle Paul wrote, “You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “‘Love your neighbor as yourself’” (Galatians 5:13-14, NIV 2011). Let’s find ways to love extravagantly this week. Let’s sow kindness. Let’s speak encouraging words. Let’s do acts to express our love.
I’ve had some good conversations over the past few weeks with people who want to join with us at North Danvers Mennonite Church as members. If you are interested in placing your membership at NDMC and sharing with us, you can speak to me in order to find out more.
Yesterday’s service was uplifting. When we share together in the Lord’s Supper, it gives us a sense of our connection with the Church throughout the world and throughout time. I find our time together sustaining. Our time together gives me strength. I hope you can say the same.
I’m praying for you all this week.
God bless, Brian