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Can We Stop Violence Before It Starts?
March 20

Last weekend the world was rocked by another mass murder, but this one was worse. The killer chose to broadcast the horror so that people could watch it live. Even worse, the video has been watched over 4000 times on Facebook and no one reported it while it was happening. What makes a mass shooting worse than when someone knows it is happening and they don't say anything?

Jacinda Adrern, the Prime Minister of New Zealand, has refused to say the killer’s name, but instead will speak of the victims whose lives were cut short. She refuses to give him the notoriety that some believe he, and other mass murders, desire. This is a stance that should be applauded and instead of digging into his personal life, we should spend more time learning about and mourning the loss of fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters, sons, and daughters. But even more, how can we stop these horrors from happening?

When someone seems to be so filled with hate, why doesn’t someone tell them that how they feel about someone, especially about their faith, race, gender, or sexuality, isn’t right? Why doesn’t someone say, “That hate doesn’t belong here?” Why doesn’t someone take a stance and say, “There is no room for that bigotry here!”? Maybe if we start to shine light into darkness, the darkness will start to shrivel away instead of growing stronger.

We have become too complacent with this sort of hatred and we need to start calling it out. That means if you have a family member who uses a racial slur, you need to tell them that it’s not ok. If you have a coworker who makes a homophobic joke, you must call them out for it. If you know someone who hates an entire religion, you need to say to them, “That isn’t right.” 

The Gospel of John talks a lot about light. John writes that the light shines in the darkness and the darkness cannot overcome the light. We are people of the light and we need to start letting our light shine.  While we are keeping our light hidden, innocent people are dying.  So, dust off that Sunday school song and stop hiding your light under a basket or letting the devil snuff it out. The world needs your light more than ever because the darkness is growing.

Be the Light,

Pastor Chris 
Last Published: March 22, 2019 4:01 PM