The Pastor's Heart

The Latest Tragedy To Hit America.

I’m supposed to be trying to write a message today about “Living The Surrendered Life”, but as I sit here trying to figure out what to write or to say…the truth is that it’s hard to want to write a message on a day like today where tragedy has once again struck us here in America.  There has been yet another mass shooting…this time outside of a movie theater on the opening night of the latest Batman movie…the reports are at least a dozen have tragically lost their lives.

So…how do you write a message after something like this happens?  I know there are many…many people who are pointing a finger at God saying that if there really is this “all powerful and loving God” how could He let something like this happen?

Many of us who are preachers and teachers of the Word of God fumble for something to say that would comfort the masses, and attempt to answer the “Where was God?” question that usually arises during something like this shooting in Aurora, Colorado.

So…where exactly was God when this happened?  Any time something like this happens it reminds me of September 11, 2001…and maybe one of the greatest things I came across that comforted me was this beautiful video someone made right here…

Where is God when tragedy strikes anyways?

What God says is this:  “I want you to know I saw every face, I knew every name…though not all of them knew Me.”

Friends…when will we wake up to realize that the last thing God wants is for any of us to perish, but even more so that He doesn’t want anyone to leave this world rejecting His Son Jesus for the very last time…and when will we wake up to understand that tomorrow may be too late?  When will we realize that tomorrow may never come…that’s why the Word of God says…today is the day of salvation.

It’s always easy to turn and point the finger at God.  Can I say to you, however, that it’s not His fault?  Can I remind you that there is another god at work in this world that’s always trying to take as many people who don’t know Jesus with him as possible?  Can I tell you that yelling and finger-pointing at God might make you feel better, but the truth is…He’s not at fault?

Listen…when the people of this nation would rather stand in line for hours for the opening of the new Batman movie, and can’t spend more than an hour in church on Sunday because it might get in the way of the NFL games or the NASCAR race…then how dare we point a finger at God?

I am not saying that we as a nation are responsible for what happened in Colorado, but what I am saying is that when we as a nation (believers and non-believers alike) point our prideful fingers at God to ask where He was…how many of us could He in return ask us questions like: “Where we you on Sunday?”  or “What happened to your commitment to that Bible Study you were going to start?”

You see…God was there.  He was there with every single person at that moment.  Some He took home…some decided for the final time to reject Him…and they will spend the rest of eternity separated from the God they mocked.

Maybe there were some of them who thought that after that movie they would get their lives together, and seek God on Sunday. Maybe there were backsliding believers who would rather see Batman than be in church.  Maybe there were those there who were openly defiant to God, but now they realize all of us Jesus freaks were right…but it’s too late then.

Maybe this isn’t the time to write a message, but to speak out about how this nation needs to get serious about turning to God instead of blaming Him for some crazy evil person who isn’t acting on God’s will at all.

On one hand, I realize that I need to be sensitive and know that this is a very tragic moment, and that there are a lot of heavy hearts today.  On the other hand, I realize that if I don’t seize this moment to bring another dose of reality in how every one of the people who died probably thought they would have more time to live their life however they wanted…and now they’re spending eternity separated from God…or hopefully spending eternity with God.

Any time a lift is taken is tragic, but the even deeper tragedy is every life that leaves this world rejecting Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.  So…that begs the very serious and obvious question:

If you were one of those victims who lost their lives…where would you be spending eternity?

If you or someone you know doesn’t know the answer to that question then I would like to invite you to check out this link:

Maybe the most important message today is this one…if you don’t know Jesus as Lord and Savior…you need to…and don’t say to yourself that you’ll do it tomorrow…I’m positive that at least one person who lost their life in that shooting thought the same thing…I’ll give my heart to Jesus tomorrow…unfortunately they don’t have any tomorrow’s left.

If you do know Jesus, and you know people who don’t know Jesus then please…take the time to get them to the link above…or talk to them about Jesus…and make sure they understand the urgency of the situation…tomorrow is not guaranteed to no man.

So…perhaps that’s the best possible message I could write today…make sure that you and your loved ones don’t put off until tomorrow…what really needs to be done today…

The Bible says:  “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.”

It’s time to make sure everyone understands they are a “whosoever” and if they haven’t called upon the name of the Lord…they are not saved.

Father, I come to You in the name of Jesus.  There really are no words some times to describe the tragedy and hurt in a heart after something like this shooting happens.  Lord so many shake their fists in anger at You wondering how You could allow something like this to happen…not really caring that You’re not the only God that’s at work in this world in which we live.

I pray, Lord, for those who have lost loved ones, and the families, the community, and all who have been affected by the senseless shooting that took place…and I ask…Lord God that You…the God of all comfort would be with those who grieve and mourn the loss of their loved ones.  I pray, Lord, that You would impress it upon their hearts that You too mourn the loss of each life who rejected Your Son for the final time.

Lord, I pray a hedge of Your protection around that community tonight…and around all of us this night.  May You take this tragedy that the devil sought to use to promote terror and fear…and turn it in to opportunities for Your glory to be shown and made known in all the earth.

Father, I ask that this would be a moment where people who don’t know You would realize that tomorrow may well be too late, and that there would be many who would come to understand how fragile life is…and that no one…not even them is guaranteed to take one more breath…I ask that Your will and Your glory be done through this event.

I ask all these things in the name of Your precious Son…Jesus…Amen & Amen

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