The Street is Silent: Proverbs 15:13-14 ESVA glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed. The heart of him who has understanding seeks knowledge, but the mouths of fools feed on folly
Last Friday as I was leaving from my work's Christmas lunch I hear on the radio of the heart wrenching horror in Sandy Hook. In an instant my face was no longer cheerful as sorrow filled my heart. I literally felt crushed.
During my drive home I imagine myself in the shoes of the teachers, parents, and children. Sadness? Hopelessness? Courage? Broken? Sure...all of those I felt. Sadly any feelings were blanketed by rage and anger. I was shaking. I turn off the radio because the Christmas music was making me tremble with fury. Those kids probably walked into school that morning innocently pondering what mommy and daddy got them for Christmas. They don't even quite understand what love is yet but they know they can't wait to share that day with their family. The parents probably spent days looking into what to make their kids happy on Christmas and where the best hiding spot is. But they'll never know.
Slowly I park my car as tears come down and I am angry with God. I am angry at the shooter. I am angry at his parents.
Really though, what is the point of being angry at anyone? Would my anger revive the dead? Would my anger at God change His plans? Would my anger make anyone better off? No my anger is foolish and so is everyone else's.
We can point our fingers and blame the lack of gun control, we can go on for hours on how the killer was a heartless psycho and we can say it was out of anyone's control. We will do all we can to disassociate the possibility that we had anything to do with it. Lanza isn't the first and he won't be the last unless we, and by we I don't mean everyone else in society other than ourselves, do something about it.
I slow my thoughts down and put myself in the shoes of Lanza. Adam was literally the embodiment of anger mixed with hatred and separation. It's easy to label him as just another monster. But I wonder if he must have sustained insurmountable pain for a very long time to have done something like this. He is not Jesus. He is not capable of bearing all of that and overcoming it.
Yes he was awkward. Don't we know someone that's awkward? Even worse he was creepy. Don't we know someone that's a little creepy? More unbearable was that he just couldn't connect with people. Don't we know someone that just doesn't seem to have friends? But what do we do? We disassociate with those people. They can stay awkward, creepy and alone because I don't want to show them any love. It's too much burden on me.
I am angry at myself. I am one of those people that decided to stay away from Lanza. Multiply that by the size of a town and that was Adam's "life." On that Friday we've lost our cheerful faces and were exposed to a crushed spirit because of Adam. But because of us, I dare say Adam had long lost his cheerful face: his spirit, long crushed before ours.
I ponder had only one person truly connected with Adam; if fate would have changed, not only for himself but the lives he took.
We meet people, see events and experience life; and to cope, we always compartmentalize the flurry of information on a daily basis. "That event was lame, not going ever. That was fun, let's doing it again. I hate this person, they're so awkward. I love that person, they're so like me." We compartmentalize and never let one seep into the other. But love can transcend our walls because it is the key that unlocks those compartments.
Days like these need silence. Not a moment of silence for those who passed but silence to refrain our mouths from feeding hatred with hate. Instead it is with clear eyes that we ought to seek love which allows us to connect. When we connect we beget understanding. Those two are key pillars to healing not to just others but ourselves. For Christ did not defeat sin through the act of revival. Sin was defeated through Christ's love and revival was merely a metaphor.
We cannot revive those who've perished. But with love we can revive hope and with hope a brighter tomorrow.