Our entire nation has been greatly saddened at the recent events that have transpired at Virginia Tech, where over thirty persons have died at the hands of a gunman. Families and friends are left to grieve the untimely death of many who were so young, and a picture is emerging of the dark thoughts of a troubled soul that would do such horrible things. The entire event is very tragic, and everyone in their own ways are trying to find answers and make sense of it all.
Unfortunately, this type of event is nothing new. Similar shootings have taken place at middle and high schools in our country; other types of attacks have taken place in government buildings and economic centers. When we add yet another event to the list, we feel compelled to ask: what can we do to be safe? How can we stop these things from happening?
People react differently and expect different things. There are many who believe that gun control is the answer to these ills, and many others believe that greater gun ownership is the answer. Some desire the government to do more to protect people; others would have the government do less. Regardless of one’s personal persuasion regarding these matters, it is clear that security is on the minds of many.
We do not enjoy these events, of course, because we know that there are many who suffer greatly, but events such as the Virginia Tech shootings force us to remember that we are not in control and that we live on the earth in a state of insecurity. It may be that gun control or more gun ownership could perhaps stop a few persons; it may be that more or less government involvement could also help. Nevertheless, tragedies will still occur, and disturbed people will find ways to commit their heinous acts.
We cannot expect to find true security in a gun, in the government, in some form of a security system, or any such thing. As it is written in James 4:14:
Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. What is your life? For ye are a vapor, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.
We are a vapor; our lives will pass on. True security cannot come from anything of our own design; true security can only come from the One who was, is, and is to come (cf. Revelation 4:8). While the world and those who are in the world fear death, we who are in Christ can cherish the hope of faith and not fear death (1 Thessalonians 4:17). In Christ, we know that the sting and power of death have been defeated for us (1 Corinthians 15:57).
It is good to be concerned about security, but let us not deceive ourselves into thinking that somehow we can truly provide our own security. Let us instead trust in God, and allow Him to be our security, that we may dwell with Him forevermore (Matthew 6:33, 1 John 2:1-6)!