How can we bear another tragedy of this magnitude?
I was focused Friday on writing a Bible Study to accompany my book, Identity Crisis: Reclaim the True You, when I felt prompted to check my Facebook. The first post I saw mentioned grief over a suicide at the high school in our former town, Sammamish, WA, but then I began to see post after post about the tragedy in Connecticut.
I don’t connect with the outside world when I am writing as I need full focus, so the only question I could ask is, “What happened?” I decided to take a break for lunch and find out. As I opened my IPAd to the news, I was stunned to see images of children being led out of the war zone of their school. The news got worse, a young man dressed in battle fatigues fights his way into the secure school, only to gun down the principal and school psychologist who try to fight him off. He leaves them dead to start his systematic killing of young, innocent children.
I shook my head, “How can we bear another tragedy of this magnitude?” Memories fill me of the recent shooting in the Aurora theater, of a little girl kidnapped and dismembered in Colorado, almost in the backyard of where my own children went to school, of the shooting in the Oregon mall, and even a stabbing in the Santa Rosa mall just the day before.
My heart breaks over each one of these events.
I can’t stop thinking “if only they knew.”
If only each one of these young men, perpetrators of violence, knew the depth of their identity by their creator, their outcome would have been very different.
If only they knew:
When God dreamed about them during their creation, he planned for them a fulfilling and fruitful life.
Their heavenly father’s delight in their very existence.
They are not spiritual orphans; they are sons to the King of the Universe.
They have a father who loves them more than himself; he was willing to give them everything when he gave up his son.
They are fully accepted; every part of them.
They are loved unconditionally without judgment or shame; they were created for relationship.
They were created to be kings in the Kingdom of Heaven.
But, they didn’t know.
They believed the lie of the thief.
They believed they were worthless; throw away children. They believed the lie that death is better than life, violence is preferable to peace, retaliation is better than forgiveness, murder and suicide trumps life with God in heaven.
So, what is our response?
My response, my call, for this season of my life is to focus on the transformational identity message.
My call is to equip leaders to experience their own identity transformation so they can go and equip those in their sphere of influence, so that the world begins to:
Imagine a world where parents developed their children to know they are beloved children of the King.
Imagine a world where teachers taught their students their true identity.
Imagine a world where church leaders equipped their congregations to live a life of covenant relationship with their heavenly father.
Imagine a world of business leaders who worked with kingdom principals.
Imagine a world of creative people creating the arts and media to invite us to celebrate our “true you’s”: the heavenly identity God gives to his people.
Imagine a world where government officials sought to rule in the Kingdom of God.
This is my response.
What is yours?
How can I come alongside you to equip you to be a communicator of the good news of our heavenly identity? What do you need to share God’s word of our adoption into his great big family with those in your life and sphere of influence?
I’d love to hear your responses as we all work together to bring light to darkness, hope to hopelessness, and joy to despair.