Posts Tagged ‘rent’

orlandoWell we’ve seen another heinous attack, a senseless act of violence. I am actually pretty thankful that I am separated from media for a few days because I get to miss all the blame placing and politicization of all of it, which is only ever amplified in a presidential election year. Evil happens in our world. It has since the fall. It will happen until the return. It is a fact of life, but this is not to say there is nothing we can do about it.

I’m reminded of a line from the musical Rent, which said, “The opposite of war isn’t peace, it’s creation.” I believe this to be true. Oh, peace is where we want to get to, but in the midst of a world filled with so much hate, the people on the side of light can cry for peace if we want, but to get to peace requires more. It requires the people of God being the people of God. The children of the Creator need to create. We need to look past a status quo that leaves us precisely where we are and we need to look for creative (and godly) solutions.

The opposite of terror is love. It always has been. Perfect love, (God’s love) drives out fear. How will we show that love to a world filled with hate? The ultimate answer is to point people to Christ. This can be done in a billion different ways, which is good since the Gospel needs to go to the majority of a seven billion person population. It requires every single believer to bring everything they have to foot of the cross and say with Isaiah, “Here am I, send me.” Every single believer who’s been wired for creativity needs to embrace their many gifts and put them to work in the name of the One who died to set us free.

The opposite of evil is Jesus. Only He can truly overcome evil, and we are His body, His hands, His feet. In God’s Word we are instructed to overcome evil with good. We are also instructed to take the truth of the Gospel to the ends of the earth. These two missions are one in the same, so get creative.

The time is now.

Overcome Terror With BeautyI was sitting in my office when I got the call. my wife told me a plane crashed into the first tower of the World Trade Center, September 11, 2001. My mind made the wrong picture. I envisioned a small single engine losing control and crashing into the huge building, a tragic but small accident. Within a few seconds my reality was shaken. The details came in, the second crash happened and the world was changed forever. I can’t be blamed for getting the wrong picture. My mind couldn’t wrap around the idea that someone could be demented and evil enough to use a plane load of human beings as a cruise missile. I’m glad my mind has a hard time comprehending such a horror.

I think back to my days as a sales rep. I used to open cases of product in stores. Before 9/11, every time I flew, I had a case cutter in my pocket. In those days no one could comprehend something so small being made into a weapon of mass destruction.

It was horrible. There was rage and outrage everywhere and there was something else, fear. For a couple of weeks the churches were full of people seeking answers, but then we got comfortable again and people returned to a new and harder normal. A lot of people wanted revenge and a lot of people wanted war, but it didn’t take long to realize it’s hard to fight shadows. 11 years later, I still have no idea what we should have done. Maybe that’s why God commands us to pray for our leaders.

How do you react to senseless violence? I’m not sure responding in kind is the answer. I think that’s why God claimed vengeance for Himself. He’s the only one who can handle it.

And now, 11 years later, the question is how do we commemorate, how do we remember. I’m glad it wasn’t made a national holiday. I don’t think I could handle seeing the flyer for the 9/11 Sale-A-Bration. I think instead we should create. The terrorists tried to make a world of fear and darkness, lets battle that with creations of light and beauty. They wanted to make the world a scarier place, so let’s beat them by making the world a better place. In the musical Rent is a song called “La Vie Boheme.” Many of my readers would find the song objectionable, but there is one line that I think holds true. Jonathan Larson wrote, “The opposite of war isn’t peace it’s creation.” Take this day or the week if you need it and create something beautiful to overcome the darkness terrorists tried to inflict.

9/11 overcome terror with God honoring beauty.