This is not a political post. While there may or may not be policy changes that could address some of these root issues, no political force can start or stop what is happening.
Last Friday a man drove onto my kids’ school campus and drove through the morning car line. He proceeded to yell inappropriate and threatening remarks. He threatened to return, implying that he intended harm. My eleven year old was outside and observed this. She was there. The school was locked down and within hours the man was arrested. One of the charges was carrying a firearm as a convicted felon. It is very likely that the man yelling at students had a weapon in his car while he was doing so. Did I mention my eleven year old was standing there?
Yesterday, just a few hours away, a school shooting occurred in a high school with multiple fatalities. There have been multiple school shootings already this year. It is only February 15.
Again, my purpose in writing this is not to debate gun laws, access to mental health, or any of the other complicated issues involved. All of those are important issues that must be addressed one way or another.
My purpose is to say out loud that we can not ignore that this generation is under attack. Our schools are under attack. It is almost a hopeless feeling in some ways. Our school security procedures are the best they’ve ever been. Kids are more protected than they’ve ever been. We can’t stop it.
We must understand that the root of this is a spiritual issue.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers of this darkness, against evil, spiritual forces in the heavens.” Ephesians 6:12
I don’t think anyone can see these types of events and deny that evil is real and active in our world. I fully believe there is a spiritual battle for the souls and lives of our kids. There is an Evil One who seeks to “kill, steal, and destroy” (John 10:10).
Our battle is against evil, which is a heart issue even more than it is a policy issue.
So what do we do with that?
- Recognize that “greater is He that is in us than He that is in the world.” (1 John 4:4) – Evil does not win. The Bible tells us suffering is to be expected. Hurt and destruction are a part of this broken world that we live in. As long as there is sin, there will be terrible things happen. But God is bigger than all of it. God uses all things for His glory. God will not be defeated by evil.
- We pray. This answer is not just the Sunday School answer. If this is a spiritual battle, spiritual weapons are required. Pray for protection of this generation. Pray over your kids. Pray over my kids. Let’s pray proactively for this generation not only after something terrible happens.
- We realize how serious our responsibility is. If you lead in a church, and specifically if you serve the next generation, do not for a minute take for granted the seriousness and the responsibility of that calling. If this is a spiritual battle, we are the ones with the answers. The calling God has put on you to reach this generation is as crucial as ever. Whether you lead a small group of kids, are a greeter at a door, lead worship… whatever you do, let us approach it this Sunday as if we are going to battle for this generation.