faith · family

Father, forgive them…

We all prayed for the police officer’s family yesterday after the tragic shooting on the Virginia Tech campus. We also prayed for the “second victim” and waited anxiously for an announcement that the shooter was apprehended.

The story unfolded that investigators believe the 2nd victim was in fact the shooter. And suddenly, the mood shifts.

I can’t help but be angry at first with anyone who would shoot and kill a police officer who was simply doing his job. But with tensions against law enforcement fairly high these days, due in large part to the Occupy movement which I will NOT go into right now, I feel the post-modern attitude toward cops is shaky at best. I’ve dated a cop and I’ll just say that some of his friends were pretty pompous and had a huge entitlement problem. But then again, they were putting their lives on the line day in and day out, walking into situations I couldn’t even imagine, and risking that any routine traffic stop could turn out to be their last. So maybe a little self-preservation is in order.

But what I couldn’t help but wonder is if people who said to pray for the 2nd victim’s family stopped praying for the 2nd victim’s family when they found out what might have happened? Maybe the family still needs our prayers, in fact, I know they do. But our emotions change and we get angry and because we can’t fathom such an action as killing a person, let alone a police officer, we let our emotions get the better of us.

I can’t say that I will ever understand the psychological makeup of someone who kills. “Legally” or otherwise. It’s something beyond me. But I do believe that we all have something that could totally push us over the edge and I would hate to know what that edge is for me, or for anyone else. It’s a scary place I’m sure. And I feel nothing but compassion on anyone who has been to that edge and lived to tell about it.

My heart goes out to both the victim’s family and the shooter’s. Any time of year is a horrible one for such a tragedy, but this time especially. I don’t want to imagine the pain of facing this season in the midst of such tragedy, and having to relive it every year from now on. Let Love shine through somehow. And I pray that God’s Grace and Peace rule the day…


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