Yesterday was Valentine's Day, a day we try to express love and kindness to others. But it became a day of horrific tragedy in Parkland, Florida. As of this writing, at least seventeen students and/or staff members died at the hands of a former student who had a grudge and, apparently, randomly shot his victims. Now it is a day of sadness and mourning for many in our nation.
One high school senior, interviewed, said the school was located in a well-to-do area of the city and that this was a sought-after school for many parents for their children. This senior said he could not believe such a crime as this shooting could occur at this school. But it did.
This tragic event reminds us that no area is off limits to pain and devastation. Sin is insane and its insanity has no moral rationale, barriers, or economic parameters. The sin and pain of murder goes back to the first family ever recorded in human history. Adam and Eve had two sons. One killed the other in a fit of jealousy and rage. Human history began with murder and continues with murder (via, wars, disobedience, rebellions, etc.). Even Jesus said that in the last days people would deliver others to be killed. Many will deceive others, betray others, and bring about an atmosphere of cold-blooded haters (cf. Matthew 24:4-13).
Is there a solution to this type of mass shootings? No, not in a free society. It may help to hold parents more responsible for the actions of their children up to a certain age of maturity. Observing and reporting some people who show certain signs of mental isolation, infatuation of guns and/or violence, etc. But then, in a free society, who gets to judge another to suppress them from their "rights"?
My religious convictions tell me that nothing short of a nationwide revival of repentance and a full surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ can turn our nation around and halt these senseless killings. Churches could make a dent in this destruction, but many churches, if not most, are turning inward and fighting each other for the same members. Many churches are too busy courting our culture with relativism rather than calling for repentance. Our culture needs to see Jesus in our churches, not dry-ice smoke, dimly lit stages, and pop-rock music bands. But I digress . . .
I have not studied the characteristics of the students of the past, but I have heard how that most of them have similar trends in their social media that lead up to their actions. But, obviously, I'm not an expert and I doubt any lawmaker will put out a call for a legal preview of certain individuals who look and/or act suspicious. (Half of the U.S. population may qualify.) Plus, their political careers would end abruptly.
Bottom line is this: If you have a friend who is despondent, abusive, or shows an abrupt change of temperament, pray for your friend. Let them know you are there to talk. And don't be afraid to seek professional help if and when needed. Too many families are crying their hearts out tonight because one young man decided to go the way of Cain.