Letter Since Las Vegas
In light of the shooting in Las Vegas on October 1, 2017, I wrote and read a letter to our community at Northwest about how I believe Followers of Jesus should handle tragedy…
Weeks like this are hard for us. They are hard because we care. We care deeply for the needs and hurts of the world. We hurt with those who hurt. We weep with those who weep. I wish I had a comfortable answer with why God allows tragedies like this to happen. I have come to see that God does allow things to happen that He does not enjoy. When I think about evil things that happen in the world, I get frustrated and wonder what God will do about it. But then I am reminded of what He has already done.
God, in Jesus, did not merely dislike or disapprove of violence, murder, and evil, God took it on Himself. Jesus subjected Himself to violence and pain and suffering and evil. He took it head on. He knows what it’s like. What seemed to be a tragedy and foolishness to the world actually became a great victory. That is our hope. Now, I am not asking us to smile and be happy while this madness is going on in the world. I am calling us to weep with those who weep. But weep well.
Weep knowing that there actually is hope. A hope that says Jesus the Christ has taken on evil and a hope that says one day He will completely rid the world of evil. Weep with the Apostle Paul’s words ringing in your hearts, “we know that for those who love God all things work together for good.” Weep knowing that these things are not good but weep knowing that God can use anything for His good.
I have been asking what type of community we will be. Will be a community who is known by our love for our brother, neighbor, and enemy? Will be a community who weeps with those who weep? Will we be a community who prays better than we post? Let us be a community who follows Jesus well. We have been. We can be. And we must be. So how can we start? Or better said, how do we continue?
There are at least three things that we can do. First off, let’s weep well. Let’s weep with those who weep. Weeping well may mean sending resources and money to those in need.
Second, we study well. We are here at northwest not for ourselves and not for now but for the world and for the future. We are here for more than a degree. We are here for more than a future pay check. So we study. We are here not to acquire things but to become the right sort of people. Let us become great followers of jesus who bring the kingdom of god as psychologists and counselors. Let us become great followers of jesus who bring the kingdom of god to businesses and the work force. Let us become great followers of jesus who bring the kingdom of god to government and policy making. Let us become great followers of jesus who bring the kingdom of god into the classroom, and into the music studio, and on the fields and courts, and in the pulpits, and on the stages, and in the streets, and in our homes. Let us do well here and bring God’s kingdom everywhere we go so that these tragedies happen less and less.
Last and really first, We pray.
Every Monday night from 7:15-8:15 our community meets under the chapel in Amundsen 24 to pray, and we will continue to dedicate that time to pray for the issues going on in our community, our country, and our world. Whenever there is any tragedy going on in the world we will pray on Monday nights.
So right here and right now, let’s pray.
-Christian Dawson, Campus Pastor