God never gives us discernment in order that we may criticise, but that we may intercede.
Every time tragedy strikes somewhere in the world this quote comes back to haunt me. It smashes me in the face and challenges me.
As I was sitting at my desk watching President Obama’s speech about the recent school shooting tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut my heart broke. The horrific loss of life, the loss of innocent children. A loss I cannot wrap my brain around.
I was initially encouraged by the response coming from my social media feeds. Tweets and Facebook posts lifting up prayers and condolences to the families and those affected by the tragedy.
Though what inevitably comes next in the wake of any tragedy is where I think we as Christians tend to sway off course. Especially on Social Media. It is the critical comments. The answers to why the tragedy happened. The answers to how it could have been avoided.
More gun laws.
Better leadership from Government.
We all have the answers and we are all quick to share them. To post our opinions. To make sure they are known so as to avoid the next tragedy. Though will that truly bring the change our nations need? Should our first answers as Christians towards these tragedies really be these things? Shouldn’t they more look like,
We are too quick to criticise. We sit on our computers. Click send buttons. Then expect change. Now I am not arguing against the answers given above. I am also not saying that the discussion and debate around those issues is wrong. There is a lot of validity to them and how they could help protect our innocent children. Though it is more the fact that it is our knee jerk response to tragedy. It is our answer to it. An answer we blast through the megaphone that is social media. Imagine for a second one of the victim’s parents are standing in front of you. Would this really be your response to them? Would it be how you comfort them and show them love in this devastating time? Would you tell them how the laws in other countries could have saved their child?
I propose a different response in the wake of tragedy. A kind that I know many of you have already done. One that takes logging off Facebook. Takes shutting off our phones. Takes getting on our knees.
A great example- A Christmas Prayer by Max Lucado