Last night in my city another gun shot rang out and the all too familiar sound of sirens penetrated the air, undoubtedly another shooting death. The homicides thus far almost outnumber the days of 2016. I don’t understand the lack of humanity that seems to be an increasing plague this season. Though I lack the comprehension, I frankly would rather not wrap my mind around the sense of it because I realize that it is senseless.
What can I do? Well, I can have one of three reactions. I can choose to be proactive, reactive or inactive.
Of course inactive means that I do absolutely nothing. It could very well mean staying in my house, ignoring the chaos around me and wishing it would go away. This option accomplishes zilch and imprisons me within the confines of my small space physically and mentally. I refuse to be inactive.
Perhaps being reactive is the better reaction or is it? If I am reactive, I am responding to a problem or situation. I would basically react to occurrences after the fact rather than doing something in advance to perhaps aid in the prevention. The only thing with this option is that I might have the reaction of Peter in the Bible when calamity struck close to home. Peter, Jesus’ disciple, was sure that he would stand up for his Lord and Savior and he did try to the best of his ability. When Jesus was arrested Peter’s reaction was to use his sword and he cut off a man’s ear. Why, because he was being reactive. He reacted to the impending situation out of anger. But, this accomplished nothing as well. Violence was not the proper response even though the situation was hostile. When hostility and violence is prevalent around me and even very close to home my reactive response could very well escalate the problem. I choose not to be reactive.
One option remains. Maybe being proactive is the best reaction. Being proactive will allow me to exercise control over a situation by being prepared. It seems I am living in a city that has taken on attributes of the Wild Wild West. I am not fearful, I am aware. I am not overly anxious, I am cautious. I am not naïve; I am discerning the time and using wisdom. I will love despite the hate, I will help others despite the lack of compassion, I will teach despite the lack of desire to learn, I will be a good neighbor. The Bible puts it best; we should treat others the way we want to be treated. I want to see a change in my city. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in the world.” The change will start with me. I choose to be proactive.
Praying for my city,
Unless the Lord watches over the city, the guards stand watch in vain. Proverbs 127:1