We need a new and renewed spirit in America. We have become polarized by Religion, race, political beliefs and optimism. I know people who truly believe that the “sky is falling in”. The man who decided to kill his fellow pupils in that Community College seemed to be seeking a place in this world. I am not excusing him, however, we see this often, or more often I should say today.
What is it? Could it be the lack of right and wrong? Could it be the ambiguous loneliness that a life without the ties that bind one human to another have been broken because the term “family” and the connections therein only seem to exist in sitcoms an drama on television? Remember the lyrics to Elton John’s “Philadelphia Freedom”?
“If you choose to you can live your life alone
Some people choose the city
Some others choose the good old family home
I like living easy without family ties
Till the whippoorwill of freedom zapped me
Right between the eyes”
I normally don’t read the postings of “killers”, because in my mind you have no RIGHT to kill another human being if they have no violent quarrel with you. However, with this situation and some others. In some young people there seems to be a sense of loneliness, a seeking to belong to something greater than themselves. For example, 20-year-old Jaelyn Delshaun Young and 22-year-old Muhammad Oda Dakhlalla are facing federal charges after authorities arrested them at Golden Triangle Regional Airport in Columbus, Mississippi. What was their crime? They’re accused of conspiring and attempting to provide material support and resources to ISIS.
The couple described their skills and asked how they could help the terror group’s efforts. “I am good with computers, education and media,” Dakhlalla allegedly wrote in one message to an FBI employee(he thought he was communicating with ISIS). “What could I contribute?”
It is actually heartbreaking…. “What can I contribute?”
And with the young man who killed his classmates and one professor, as much as we know he wanted to belong….. anywhere. He could be gay, straight, Republican or Marxist….. As long as it was what YOU wanted….. and apparently there were no takers on his dating website.
I am not asking you to feel sorry for any of these people. Just let’s take the message and do something…. if even in our own home. something is amiss…… We wanted a society with no rules, no right and wrong, religion that makes us feel good and never bad — like a lollipop that never ends. We want to kill some babies and keep the ones we want. We never want to hurt animals…… but kids….. that’s just “Jim dandy”. We want to inject our children with hormones so that they can switch their gender at 12 and never think about when they want to switch back at 14.
We never really thought about the children. We thought we could live forever. And we use the little blue pill or now the pink pill along with our Botox, implants and face lifts to let us believe we can cheat time. We want to legalize drugs mostly because through the haze we are 17 again.
But if we can think back to what people called “the bad old days”, they often look good…… simple…… and with less malice. But Angela…. it was racist, homophobic, Islamophobic, oppressive, etc…….maybe….. but, neither I nor any of my friends ever wrote ANYONE asking to “contribute”. Most of us had so many chores and responsibilities that the last thing we wanted to to was volunteer for some mess overseas. And then church was a way to…… dress up, get away, be with friends and relax….. we even learned a bit of scripture. Belonging to something greater is important.
Two scriptures you might want to pander this evening:
Titus 2:3-5New International Version (NIV)
3 Likewise, teach the older women to be reverent in the way they live, not to be slanderers or addicted to much wine, but to teach what is good. 4 Then they can urge the younger women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled and pure, to be busy at home, to be kind, and to be subject to their husbands, so that no one will malign the word of God.
Life by the Spirit
13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh[a]; rather, serve one another humbly in love. 14 For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.