Anybody who has been in a dark crowded theater in the last week has probably pondered, “What if that were me who would have been a victim or someone who was part of my family?” Last Friday’s tragic incident in Colorado leaves a solemn reminder of the fragility of life and the evil that exist in this world. I won’t offer up reductionist theories on how to eradicate mass shootings and certainly don’t feel we will ever obtain a utopian society in this temporal world we live in.
Yet, this should challenge us as a society to start serious conversations on why a civilian has access to an assault rifle that can injure and kill so many in a matter of 90 seconds. There is a thin line between a society that entitles individual liberty and right to bear arms and one that is responsible for insuring safety for its citizens. It seems that far too many times guns fall into the hands of sociopaths and mentally ill people who feel no empathy for human life. There are those who feel isolated and angry at society and families and co-workers who are not vigilante at seeking help for these individuals. Last of all we are part of a culture where violence is increasingly prevalent in music, movies, and video games.
In the end I don’t have answers and we as a society should look at all factors instead of taking sides on what is the causation of mass shootings. We live in a complex world where we are all interconnected to each other. In closing on earth God does not promise to spare humans from tragic events as we live in a fallen world. He does promise those who belong to him that he will always be with them in the midst of trials and tribulations and that one day those who have been redeemed will spend eternity with him where there will be no more pain, sickness, or suffering. Let us continue to pray for the victims’ families, survivors, and the shooter and his family as well. God is able to redeem any circumstance for ultimate good.