Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.
~1 Thessalonians 5:16-22
I bet there are people who are asking, “Where was God on Saturday when Jared Loughner started shooting?” “Why didn’t He stop it?” “Why did it have to happen?”
Why is there Evil in the world? The Devil rules the earth. Evil is the abscence of God just like darkness is the abscence of light. God gave humans free will and humans have messed that up every since Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. God also gave us instructions on how to live and told us time and again to reject and avoid evil.
They must turn from evil and do good; they must seek peace and pursue it. ~1 Peter 3:11
Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God. ~3 John 1:11
Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. ~Romans 7:20-23
Sin lives in each and every one of us. People like Laughner, who start showing signs of evil need to get professional help. There’s no way that police can watch or follow every person who threatens to do something or post demented manafestos online.
I feel and pray for Laughner’s parents. I cannot fathom what they are experiencing. The guilt they must feel thinking what could they have done differently. What about the people Laughner came in contact with prior to the incident? Are they second guessing their actions?
Hindsight is 20-20.
As Christians, we need to open our eyes and ears and recognize the signs of trouble in people and reach out to help them. If it’s seeing that they get professional help or just reaching out to them and showing that somebody cares – whatever the jesture – it may help.
We may never know what really triggered this guy to start to shooting. And all we can do when we come across someone who’s “disturbed” is ask ourselves, what would Jesus do? Love them.
Soli Deo Gloria