It’s hard to find the words that adequately capture the emotions most of us are feeling. Wisdom has taught me to withhold weighing in on these types of horrific events because these events are so fluid and what’s known versus what’s rumored changes rapidly in the initial days and weeks following a mass shooting.
The news of another school shooting that resulted in the deaths of innocent children should cause us all great sorrow.
Today, I delivered a sermon. It was hard to focus on the subject at hand due to the weight of my heartache. Yes, even our homeless friends and neighbors feel the overwhelming hurt from these senseless, inexplicable killings. Evil takes no prisoners.
The key verse that my message this morning focused on (or as folks like to say “where I was coming from”) Matthew 7:13-14, a passage otherwise known as “the Narrow Gate”.
You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way. But the gateway to life is very narrow and the road is difficult, and only a few ever find it.Matthew 7:13-14 (New Living Translation)
Jesus reaches the closing stanzas of his Sermon on the Mount. He begins to land the plane. He has explained to the audience—a mix of disciples, religious leaders, and a crowd—what it looks like to exhibit the character of Christ and to live it out. We now come to a fork in the road and are faced with a choice of eternal consequence.
We find ourselves traveling on the broad road as we come across another option. The gate is narrow and the road ahead looks rocky and difficult. But, Jesus invites us to follow it. He reminds us that we must count the cost and realize that following the difficult road will require perseverance.
First, we must choose to make a change. God doesn’t force us into a relationship even though He desires it greatly. God wants to see restored that which sin has torn apart. That’s why God sent His son, Jesus, to show us the way.
I believe that these horrific tragedies like the shooting in Uvalde are a symptom of a greater ailment. We are born with a God-sized hole in our heart. I believe that only Jesus can heal that emptiness.
My heart aches, as yours likely does, for the people of Uvalde. As I write this a notification comes across my phone. Our local police department responded to a male who was seen walking towards the high school a few blocks away from our house. Truth is, sad as it might be, this can happen in any of our hometowns because evil knows no boundaries.
Saddened, yet hopeful.
The Devotional Guy™