Sunday, December 16, 2012

My Heart is Sad

My heart is sad today.

My heart is sad for the families and loved ones of those precious souls (both old and young) who were killed on Friday. 
My heart is sad for Adam Lanza's family, who is now having to cope with not only a dead mother/wife/sister/aunt and a dead son/brother/nephew, but also with a barrage of hate against that same son/brother/nephew.
My heart is sad for those who got worked up over the "Wear Pants to Church" event, and who let their self-righteousness get the best of them and condemn those women who started the event to hell. 

I'm going to try to condense my thoughts by doing numbered paragraphs.

1. An article has been going around entitled "I am Adam Lanza's Mother" that I really appreciate. I will add the link, but it is written from the view point of a woman who has a 13 year old with a mental illness who has threatened to kill her and himself multiple times and is currently being placed in a mental facility. She discusses that mental health should be something more talked about. And I agree wholeheartedly. While I don't believe that blame should be misplaced - it was Adam that pulled the trigger - a myriad of things could have happened in his life that led to his making that decision, whether the decision was truly his or not.
In my Adolescent Development class at BYU, our final unit was on school shootings. We took all the different aspects of development during the adolescent years and used them to help see just what might influence someone to do that.
Say the young man had a difficult temperament to begin with, add on a family who enjoyed hunting together and owned guns, add on a liking for violent video games and the ability to get his hands on them, add on a bad break up, add on a mental illness that wasn't detected, add on being bullied - and he just might crack and no longer be in control of his decisions. 
My heart hurts for all those that don't count the shooter as a victim. Please, think before you talk. Please remember that that family lost loved ones as well. Please try not to judge.

2. That said, it is a horrific thing that happened. And many heroes were made that day. I really enjoy this quote by (Mr.) Fred Rogers that has been going around:

“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words, and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers — so many caring people in this world.”

It's so true. Let's try to focus on all those caring people who are the helpers after a tragedy occurs. That is what I want to teach my children.

Let's remember that those little ones are with Christ now.
And pray that He will help comfort those that were left behind.

3. The "Wear Pants to Church" event. This has been spreading like wildfire. Everyone has an opinion. Some are not so nice. One of the main founders of this movement (entitled All Enlisted) is Stephanie Lauritzen. She blogs as the mormon child bride and I have been reading her blog for about 3 years now. She is witty and good with words. She is LDS. She struggles with her place in the Church. 
She posted a blog post yesterday that made my heart ache.
She didn't start this out of malice or with the spirit of contention. She is genuinely trying to find a place in the Church. She is trying to give a voice to those, who  like her, may feel outsiders in a religion the love so very much.
While I don't always agree with her, I see what she is trying to do, and I applaud her for her courage. And I am so sad that there are those of us, who are church members, who would send hateful comments her way. That is not the Gospel as I understand it. 

In summary, 

My heart is aching for those who are misunderstood in all aspects of life. 
Let's try to be more understanding, and less judgmental in all of our daily doings. 
Let's think before we speak and act, and be more Christlike.
My testimony is that that is what Christ would want us to do. 
Let's help build up our fellowmen.

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