December 17, 2012

Cures for feeling powerless

We will never know the full story surrounding the crimes that took place in Sandy Hook, Aurora, Columbine, or Virginia Tech or any of the other sites of horrific events. These places are so deeply ingrained in our national psyche that their names are forever associated with the terror that gripped them. We focus our attention intensely, study the news reports and eventually dismiss ideas towards action, feeling ineffective in a world that seems to have gone bad.

In an attempt to feel less powerless and more effective, I've compiled a list of ideas for action. There is only so much hand wringing, news stalking, and lamenting among ourselves will accomplish. It's a useful tool for processing what happened, but if we really want to do something, we are not powerless. We possess the greatest tools for change in the world. We possess love. We care. We cannot allow our shock and grief to render us ineffective.

Without further ado, here are some ideas:
*Agree that the time to talk about action is now. Waiting just means that we delay the opportunity to change something as long as we wait. Whatever opinion you have about the factors that contributed to these sort of horrors could be, work to change it. Whether it's lack of gun control, society, violent media, mental illness, or a combination? Pick the factor that you think would improve the situation and do something. Don't argue about which factor it is or why XYZ isn't the reason. You have an opinion, do something constructive about your opinion. 
*Reach out to someone who seems lonesome, awkward, or uncomfortable. Say hello. Show some interest. Maybe that is the first step to convincing that troubled soul that someone cares. We don't know. Be the bigger person and reach out. 
*Write your lawmakers. They have the power to create laws that will help protect our nation. Don't give up. Find out what they can do. Make your voice heard in a positive way.  This is the time to be political.
We can only write our own story, we cannot change the rest of the world. Why not start with ourselves?  What will you do to be a part of a better today and tomorrow?
...  these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.  (1 Cor. 13:13)


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