I have been asked by several folks over the past couple of days on how we might address the situation in Newtown CT here in the Westshore of Cleveland. I have a couple of thoughts, one spiritually, and the other practically.
First, as Christians we need to look out for one another and our neighbors in love! We are called to live in this period of time, and, it is not a mistake that you and I are living in 2012. We must, live unto the Lord with a renewed Contagious Christianity – so that the world would take notice about how we love each other and them! To our socially awkward neighbors – we need to take risks from our comfortable suburban homes and reach out to them as well – and it’s a hard ministry! Many families in the suburbs today do not want to get to know their neighbors. I would suggest that as you are working in your yard, or going out for your mail to smile and say “hi” as you see them and to go out of your way to engage in conversation with them. No one thought the shooter would go as far as he did last Friday! But, I do wonder – if as danger signs appeared, was there community help for his mother available and was she open to getting him that help? Doesn’t sound like it, but I may be wrong. If there was a gospel community of God’s grace & truth available to them both, I can’t help but think that he cold have gotten the professional assistance that he needed.
Obviously he didn’t live in reality, and something snapped. I pray that it never happens again, but I plead to you all – if some social recluse lives near you, as far as it depends upon you, reach out and attempt to establish a relationship with him and his parents. And, be friends as God grants you opportunity. I’m not saying that these steps would have stopped the shooter last Friday – but I think it can only help to be good neighbors in our day by being interested in other people and engaging in meaningful conversation. That way, we can speak into other’s lives and get them the help that they need, of course if they are willing.
2nd, I think it is time for every school in our country to have a full time – well trained, policeman to stop this nonsense as well as a metal detector outside the doors of our schools. The airlines have done it for years and guns do not get on planes! I think it will work for our schools, and if someone tries – we would have a well trained, armed young police officer present to defend the kids, teachers,and administrators if need be.
Those are my thoughts, my prayers are being lifted continually for the families of these precious children, teachers, and administrators who were lost last Friday!