Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8
If we all followed just this one verse of scripture days like last Friday in Newtown, CT at the Sandy Hook Elementary School would become an impossibility. Ever since that day I have been overcome with deep sadness for the victims, their loved ones, the first responders, and everyone who is grieving with them. The one thing that has stood out about this terrible tragedy is the way the people there have turned to their faith to find solace and comfort. It gives me hope that our nation is not lost.
Atheists and Agnostics declare that there is no God because if there were a God, evil couldn’t exist. That is a straw man argument. We all are created with ‘free will’. We decide what we believe, what actions we take and what we want. Free Will is a gift and God cannot take it away from us because without it there would be no real Love, Kindness, or Goodness in the world, everyone would be robotic, unimaginative, unfeeling and without purpose.
Taking God out of the public square, the move to Secularize America has taken the country down a dark road where ‘excuses’ for bad behavior are portrayed as reasons. Making everyone responsible for one person’s depravity due to them being ignored or shunned or bullied or a myriad of other responses that supposedly drives a human being to such depravity. Where we once had what was described as ‘polite society’ where certain standards of public behavior was expected, we have moved to an ‘in your face’ society where anything goes and if you complain about it you are intolerant.
Public media and entertainment has become one giant expletive. Bad language, nudity, perversion, and extreme violence, all standard fare on television and movies, even commercials. These things insult my intelligence and offend my senses but if I complain I am intolerant. Yet, things like nativity scenes, Christmas Trees, Prayers in public and crosses (all symbols of love, kindness, generosity and goodness) in public are excepted targets as being offensive and insulting. Black and White, Good and Evil have swapped places in the realm of what is acceptable, making tragedies like the slaughter of innocents in a public school not only possible but probable.
When these senseless tragedies occur and I am forced to look away from the things described in Philippians 4:8 my senses are bombarded with grief and even physical illness. I grieve not only for the victims and the people who loved them but also for the perpetrator’s lost soul.
The things we allow into our minds and hearts are the things that will come to fruition…..