The truth is God was there, He is always there. He was there with the first responders giving them the strength to go into the unknown, the scary, the unimaginable and do their jobs. He was with all those people as the ran out to safety, He was with the doctors and nurses who received the wounded, and He was definitely with the officer who stopped the madness.
It is easy after an incident like this to start talking about guns and how bad they are, when the truth is that gun violence may have started the incident but it was gun violence that ended it. It isn't a lack of gun control that causes or even makes these incidents possible. Even if there were absolutely no guns in this world there would still be murderous violence. Cain killed Abel with a rock. This isn't a gun issue its a heart issue, its a sin issue.
Today as we try to figure out how to pick up the pieces from yesterday's tragedy we cross denominational lines and we come together as a town committed to community. We spend hours planning a citywide memorial service and figuring out how to help those struggling to cope with what happened. We hit our knees in prayer and supplication for those we love and those directly affected by the hurt from yesterday. We stand behind our Law Enforcement and Emergency Personnel who are working endlessly to protect and serve us. We continue on with our lives helping each other find peace and comfort in the midst of this storm. Today we are Hesston Strong.
This is more than just a town, this is a community with a heart beat that is so strong people can't stop talking about it. We can't let fear get a foothold in this beautiful town. Yes, "It happened here" but it doesn't have to define us, we may have made the map yesterday but we can stay on that map because of how we respond to this tragedy, not by how we let the tragedy control us. God is still God, and He is still holding us together, we just have to have faith today and every day. Faith is the only way fear will go away, faith is the only way we will sleep at night. I believe that Hesston will come out of this stronger and that God will be more visible than He already was. I've never lived in a town where it was easier to love God than this one, and I think that will only become more true as we move forward from here.
"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God, so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes. For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in heavenly realms. Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand." - Ephesians 6:10-13
It is time to suit up, get on our knees, and lift up our arms in prayer to the one who is in control. Jesus said, "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." - John 16:33.
I pray that the peace that passes all understanding will sweep over this community, we will never understand why this happened, but we can come back to peace knowing that God is still in control. Thank you Lord for your peace! Amen!
The visuals are strong today, the support is quite loud!