As I’m sure you’ve heard, there was a mass shooting in Texas. It was in a Baptist Church, no less, nothing anyone ever wants to think about. It caused me to reminisce about Sunday mornings as a child with my family.
As a little girl going to Sunday service, I never really imagined the idea that some madman or woman could walk into a church and inflict murder. I knew we had a security system but other than that, I always felt relatively safe. It was a place where families gathered and most of my first friendships formed — it was a loving community and safe.
Nearly twenty years later, I don’t have that same feeling. I see the guarded police at the door and the entrance of our house of worship, and I wonder if he’s there for more than just “directing traffic”. I know that they are there for the potential of much more… and I hang my head at the somber reality.
But this morning, after hearing the news of Texas, was eerily different. I stood during the service and had the same fleeting thought I usually have nowadays. What if a killer opens fire in here? What will I do? Drop to the floor? Run to the nursery for Chase? Run with Greg to the exits? I find it so uncanny that this thought plagued my soul this morning, where shortly after many were shot in the south.
After the numbing effects of tragedy after tragedy, I think we have two choices. We can either become obsessed with how horrific this world has gotten and discuss it at length, feeling worse about ourselves and the situation. The second choice is to understand the limits of our own humanity. We are only flesh and blood, sent with a purpose in this life. To become obsessed and bitter doesn’t help us live a fuller life nor does it fulfill our purpose.
The pulsating sound of a bullet, and the image of dropping to the ground should be our every morning thought.
If I die today, can I say I’m at peace? At peace with God, with my family, with myself? The realization of our finite existence should provoke us to live with the end in mind.