Monday, August 25, 2014

Are We Making Good Decisions?

Saying “guns don’t kill people, people kill people” is like saying “cigarettes don’t kill people, people kill people”. Even “cars don’t kill people, people kill people” can be touted. The fact is people are not making good decisions.

When it comes to guns and gun control, we know the second amendment grants us the right “to keep and bear arms”. With that being said, I think we only need to look at the first amendment that “prohibits the making of any law respecting an establishment of religion, impeding the free exercise of religion” to realize the how we may have distorted the original context our founding fathers may have intended.

Unfortunately, we live in an imperfect world. We have legislative controls on drugs – both legal and illegal. Statutes designed to prevent crimes against children and women abound, yet still we have violence and death.

We as a nation have learned that no matter what laws are established, enforced, and/or regulated there are always going to be those who disobey the laws or feel they are above the law. That is why prisons abound and are in some measure overflowing and overcrowded.

On a personal note, I am still evaluating some of my long held beliefs concerning gun control and capital punishment to mention only two.

Watching the news and seeing what Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) is doing and proposes is frightening. They are a very real and a very present danger to this nation and our core beliefs. 

To read and hear about persons being beheaded unless they renounce their religion and claim allegiance to ISIS is beyond comprehension. Until we open the history books and read about the Muslim Conquests in the 7th century or the Spanish Inquisition in the 12th century or the Crusades which occurred between the years of 718 – 1492.

All these wars, all the loss of life and destruction was done in the name of God in an attempt to “convert” peoples to either Christendom or Allah. I do not believe the Prince of Peace was involved in any of these historical events. Nor do I believe He was involved in the “manifest destiny” which was the widely held belief that American settlers were destined to expand throughout the continent that included the decimation of the native peoples who previously inhabited these lands. The establishment of chattel slavery in the 18th and 19th centuries caused a divisive split in this nation and a civil war. 

I hope that I would have been an abolitionist during that era, or helping to house those traveling on the Underground Railroad. So many factors would come into play, such as where in the nation my family resided and what my spiritual beliefs were.

All I know for today is that I want to be a part of community - the community of faith and to be Christ to someone who may need a touch from the Prince of Peace.

Wishing you everyday grace,
Tamara

Psalm 34:14 (NASB) 
Depart from evil and do good;
Seek peace and pursue it.