Don't get numb

March 6th, 2018

On Ash Wednesday, 17 people were killed and 14 were injured in a shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The Parkland shooting, which lasted only six minutes, resulted in one of the deadliest school massacres ever in America. The thoughts of students and teachers hiding in trepidation and lying dead in the hallways haunt us. Then there are heroic stories of teachers and students who sacrificed their own lives to save the lives of others. This tragedy hits close to home — especially for teenagers who wonder when it will happen to them — unless changes are made.

Enough is enough

The rising number of mass shootings in the news is overwhelming. We all are exhausted from grieving these senseless tragedies. It can be tempting to stick our heads in the sand, because we simply can’t deal with another shooting — but real change happens only when we allow our hearts to break. Avoiding the pain will make us numb and will continue the cycle of normalizing mass shootings in United States. Worry over getting shot while at school should never become a normal thought process. It’s reasonable to experience fear after hearing about this type of tragedy. However, we cannot allow fear to rule our lives. Fear typically leads to more violence, panic or revenge. Instead of letting fear dictate our actions, we must boldly voice our pain and come together to grieve and take action. This is what the survivors of Stoneman Douglas High School are doing, along with teenagers across the nation who refuse to stay knocked down.

Hope is on the rise

The teen survivors of this shooting are not waiting for adults to make changes. For the next few weeks, pay close attention to the stories unfolding and listen carefully to what the young people are saying. Teenagers are refusing to sit in despair. Instead, they are organizing marches, rallies, attending town hall meetings and making their voices heard! Let’s get behind our young people by being brave enough to let our hearts break, to put fear in it’s place and to support the amazing ways God is using teenagers to bring restoration to our world.

Question of the day: What were your initial thoughts and feelings when you heard about the Parkland shooting?
Focal scriptures: Matthew 2:16-23; Psalm 56:1-11; Habakkuk 1:1-5; 2:1

For a complete lesson on this topic visit LinC.

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