Friday, October 06, 2006

What's Going On With Recent School Shootings?

This past week we were shocked and saddened to learn of a 32-year-old milk truck driver and father of 3 entering an Amish school in Pennsylvania and killing little girls execution style. This follows the tragic account from the week before of a 53-year-old man entering a school in Colorado, molesting several girls and then killing one. In both cases the men killed themselves afterward.

According to ABC News there have been 25 shootings at or near schools across our nation since the beginning of school two months ago! What’s going on?

Some complain that schools are not secure enough and need more procedures and personnel to ensure safety. Some continue the debate about gun control. Some point the finger at the media for giving “15 minutes of fame” to the perpetrators. Maybe there’s some truth to these positions and others that I didn’t mention. We probably should see some change in the above-mentioned areas.

However, I’m not hearing in the national conversation what I consider to be at the top of the list for the cause and effect of these tragic and horrific shootings. EVIL.

The most recent case involving Charles Roberts is the most illustrative of my point. Here is an average guy with a regular job, married with three children of his own. Without exception, everyone that knew Roberts said that they could never in their wildest dreams imagine him shooting and killing the little Amish girls. And yet, with full premeditation he enters the school with several guns, a lot of ammunition, lumber to block the door, a change of clothes and K-Y jelly, which one can only speculate was for sexual assault purposes.

Was Roberts depressed, upset, despondent, or hopeless? People get like that all the time but if they start “losing it” they are usually self-destructive at that point. They get drunk, take drugs, or even attempt suicide. Yet, Roberts carefully orchestrates and carries out a plan that assaults innocence, brings him fame and ends his life and pain. Now Roberts' invisible and seemingly insignificant life is known to all Americans and will live on in infamy.

This is the way evil works. The Bible teaches that there is a real person of evil called Satan or the Devil. He really has power. He really does influence the thinking and feelings of people.

Yes, make schools safer. Let’s work to have better control over who gets the privilege to use a gun. Let’s quit sensationalizing and making famous disturbed people who do awful things. But, let’s not forget to address the pervasive problem of evil. The ONLY hope we have in fighting against evil is the heart transforming work of God. ONLY God can change our evil and broken hearts and make them good and whole.


RC said...

I can think of several people that are Christians but seem so hopeless. If God is the only hope in making our hearts whole - why doesn't it last?

Scott Brewer said...


Great question. There are a lot of things that could be said but I will try to be brief.

1. Healing is like health in that it is not once-for-all. It has to be maintained. If I've been healed by God from the trauma of abuse, I still have to regularly allow God to touch that area of my life and continually bring healing. If I don't I can drift back into an unhealed state.

2. Being a Christian IS a major factor in my healing. I say this with a very tender heart and a deep concern for many people that I know--the fact of the matter is that a lot of people who use the tag "Christian" or even believe themselves to be Christian are not. In America many have substituted an intellecutal acceptance of doctrine and the practice of morality and have missed having a real, living relationship with God.

My passion is to see those far and near to God actually cross a relational line by faith with Christ.