My heart broke listening to the father of a beautiful 14 year old, as he expressed his grief at a candlelight service in Parkland, Florida. Through tears he expressed his pain. In exasperation he declared, “I don’t know what to do next!”
I imagined the faces of my children when they were that age. I know the process those parents will have to endure, but as a parent I can’t imagine how I could carry the heavy emotional burden of that kind of massive grief. It’s not only the knowledge of death. These parents will suffer over and over as their minds replay graphic details and wonder if their child suffered before dying and the horror of his/her last moments. To move forward they must accept a future without their child in it. They must let go of the dreams of that child as well as the joy of future accomplishments that can’t be celebrated.
We must lift all of the families and friends of these victims in prayer. Their grief must be comforted before any of them can go forward. At the same time, we must ask the question, “What can I do? What can this nation do to stop this kind of unspeakable act?”
Are there answers? Absolutely. We don’t want verbal platitudes or governmental patches that don’t work. We demand real answers that will change this country forever and bring our children back to a place of innocence and successful childhoods?
YES! Absolutely we can act. There are things we can do!
For the past year I have fasted one day a week and prayed for this nation, our churches, our schools and our families. While I have been writing, I didn’t post because I felt something was missing. I waited for God to lead me. I continued to care for my mom, to study and to wait for God to set the plan in place.
God’s timing is always perfect. I called a friend last week. “Pat, I believe I am close to the time I should release much of what I’ve been working on. Please pray for me.”
When the shooting at Parkland happened, I grieved. I prayed. I processed the awful tragedy that we all face knowing it could happen again at any moment and at any public place. Yesterday, I received some new information and as I prayed – the pieces began to fall into place.
Now is the time. It’s time for me to share what I’ve been working on. It’s time to make changes so this type of tragedy doesn’t happen again. And maybe….it’s time for someone reading this to make changes in their life as well.
So… lets begin. I hope you will join with me and let’s make a difference in the lives of those around us. Maybe your part will be just to pray. Maybe you will feel like promoting my website, speaking or sharing my articles with others. Maybe, God will lead you to make a difference in your community. What you decide to do or the stand you take is not as important as making the decision to “Take A Stand”.
The best place to start is always with God. I hope all my friends, family and readers will join with me this next week to pray for one thing – WISDOM. While it’s easy to say, “I know what to do…” it’s often harder to hit the target of success and actually make a difference.
In order to make this country better and give our children a chance to survive and be successful, we will need Wisdom. We must have GOD given Wisdom. We must be able to pass over the illogical noise and go straight to the heart of the matter. We must be committed to truth. It will mean that through prayer we will see solutions that others may reject, may question or that will make them feel uncomfortable. Yet, if we are to make successful changes, we must be willing to push for answers that work – not just platitudes that don’t challenge us to succeed.
There are over 300 reasons why children are violent. Did you get that?
OVER THREE HUNDRED REASONS FOR VIOLENCE BY CHILDREN
It’s not just guns. It’s not just bullies. It’s not just economic status. It’s not just school programs.
It is a combination of multiple factors that drive some children to commit violence. We can’t blame it on one factor and look the other way when a different fact hits too close to home. We have to highlight “all” reasons for violence and address every one of them to create an environment of success for our children. Lives are at stake. Even without violent tendencies – many children are suffering and will never reach their full potential because they aren’t growing up in an environment that promotes success. You probably know an adult who is still hampered by the devastating environment of his/her childhood. You’ve probably watched them and thought – “They will never succeed because they can’t get over the pain of the past.”
Will you pray with me for wisdom as we discuss these issues? Will you join me in conversation about these problems? Will you be determined to open your mind to new possibilities? Together we can make a difference.
Dear Jesus, please wrap your arms around every parent, every teacher, every student and every friend that knew the victims of Parkland personally. There pain is overwhelming. Their grief washes over them like huge waves. Their knees buckle and their body shakes. They need your peace. Wrap your arms around each one of them and be present in their lives. Comfort their spirit but most of all, comfort their mind and help them to find a way to cope. Give them your peace.
We also ask that you will comfort the nation. Keep us calm and focused on how to move forward. We desperately need your wisdom. You made us. You know what we need to be successful. Our country has become a place where lies, corruption, deceit and evil has been allow to flourish. On a daily basis we see how evil humans can be. It’s time for a renewal that includes coming back to you. It’s time for taking steps to make our country better – not just financially, legally or militarily – but better morally. It’s time to promote better lives by being better people.
I ask you today to show me where I need improvement. Show me where I can make changes to my own life so that I’m a better person. Show me where I can make a difference in the world around me.
Please Jesus, be with our President and give him the wisdom he needs to make good decisions for this country. Be with our officials in government. Use your power to convict them of any wrongdoing in their hearts and help them to want to be people of honor once again. Give our leaders a desire to lead this country back to “Honor”. Cause our leaders to stop promoting dysfunctional thoughts that damage lives and start promoting morals that help individuals succeed. We beg you to renew the hearts and minds of those who sit in power in Washington and bring them back to a love for this country, it’s people and our common faith in you.
As we go forward on this website, help us to uncover the truth and wisdom that will help us make a difference in our country. By your name we ask this. Amen.