THIS is how to be safe
A top agenda item in America this year is safety. How we keep ourselves safe is a perpetual news thread these days. Like many I know, you may be deeply invested in the conversation, and here I’m speaking to gun control—but not in a way some may think.
The best way to stay safe, and this comes after my sermon this past Sunday that honored police officers, is to know Jesus. Seriously. Know Jesus.
There is no lock that will keep you safe. There is no wall that will keep you safe. There is no shield, bunker, bullet proof window or moat (for those of you who live or may want to live in a castle) that will completely keep you safe. These measures may help extend or protect your life, yes, but admit this: you cannot ever fully be safe.
Unless you know Jesus.
Hard pill to swallow number one. You are going to die. Hard pill to swallow number two. Those who love are going to die. That’s a fact.
My Sunday school students are junior high kids. Yikes. I know. I teach junior high! Heaven help me!
I’m totally kidding on that last part but am not kidding here: two of my students have stress—yes, stress—because every school day they walk into a building that is not completely safe. That building cannot be completely safe. Don’t tell me otherwise.
Modern-day prisons are equipped with the highest safety measures yet, speaking again about recent news feeds, you know people still die in them because something went wrong. I’m not going further into specifics about prison or school safety; two spaces I know so little about; I’ll speak to what I am studying.
Here’s the truth. The only truly safe way you can live this life is to know about the next one.
Every parent has lost his/her child at some point. You’re at the park, at a play, or on a playground. Boom. They are out of sight. You may not panic outright in the first seven seconds, but you know in the depth of your heart that, try as you might, you cannot ever completely keep your kiddo safe.
Unless they know where they are going.
And your child, no matter his or her age, should know where you are going, too.
Jesus being the good shepherd (John 10:11-18) was our lectionary text this past Sunday. The shepherd protecting his sheep is one of the most powerful allegories in scripture. Protection. Being kept safe. Is that not what you’ve been reading about in this column?
Talk about gun control. This needs to happen. And I hope you know someone passionate on both sides of the argument because rather than divide, we all need to hear what we hold in common, and that is the desire for safety.
I cannot keep you alive here, no one can. But I can tell you about Jesus, what He’s done, and, out of love, what He will do for you.
This blog was first published in the Susquehanna Independent on April 25, 2018.