“Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter.”
Martin Luther King Jr.
Yesterday, every time I thought about Tuesday’s Kentucky school shooting, I cried. I cried because the children who were killed were my daughter’s age, 15. I cried because two sets of parents have empty beds in their homes. I cried because I’m so tired of the violence, especially to children and cried because I can’t do anything about it.
Or can I?
As I cried and prayed yesterday, I kept thinking about a quote by Mother Theresa:
“…I feel that the greatest destroyer of peace today is abortion, because it is a war
against the child – a direct killing of the innocent child – murder by the mother herself.
And if we accept that a mother can kill even her own child,
how can we tell other people not to kill one another?”
Whether one believes there’s a correlation between abortion and violence, Mother Theresa’s point is difficult to argue. But what can I do about it? Well, perhaps it’s less about what I can do and more about what I can’t do:
Rescue those being led away to death; hold back those staggering toward
slaughter. If you say, “But we knew nothing about this,” does not he who weighs the
heart perceive it? Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay
everyone according to what they have done?
I can’t be okay doing nothing. I can’t cry, feel bad, pray…then forget. I can’t reconcile something I heard pastor Matt Chandler say: Under Stalin, forty million people were murdered and under Hitler, thirty million. Since Roe vs. Wade, in the U.S. alone, fifty-five million babies have been murdered. Regardless of who I vote for, what I think about women’s rights and the science behind if a fetus is human, I can’t ignore those numbers and I can’t remain silent.
So what am I going to do? I’ve been praying about this for a long time and here’s what I’ve concluded: the answer is always love. I’m going to love by not judging those who have had abortions (many of my friends have). Love by having empathy instead of criticism toward women with unwanted pregnancies. Love by supporting ministries like the Human Coalition who don’t chastise women, but gives them support and compassionate options. Love by praying for women, doctors and nurses at both abortion and pro-life clinics. I’m going to love by being a small voice for the voiceless. I’m going to love by doing something.
“Dear Lord, Please provide peace and comfort to the families involved in Tuesday’s shootings, including the family of the shooter, a child himself. Show us what to do about all this, Lord. Help us be hands and feet that aren’t cliché, lifeless and numb. Wake us up and keep us from living a life of apathy, devoid of conviction and missing opportunities to love others. The stakes are too high.
In Jesus’ Name, Amen.”