Joy, Sadness and Anger

Joy, Sadness and Anger

So many things, so much to say, so little time.

As I write this Distraction, I am joyful, and sad, and angry, all at the same time. I reconnected with a person from the past…from my high school days at church camp. John Powell and I were both considering ministry in the summer of 1969. We both walked forward at the invitation on Friday night at CYF camp to state that we had been called to the ministry. John went to The Ohio State University before transferring to Transylvania as a science major. He attended the University of Kentucky for a Masters in Science, but along the way found himself attending seminary at Lexington Theological Seminary. I went to the University of Cincinnati as a chemical engineering major only to transfer to Bluffton where I majored in religion. It may have a round-about way to do it, but we both ended up where we thought we supposed to be. John just became the Interim Minister at First Christian Church, Bardstown. Exciting to see each again after 40 plus years and tell stories over lunch as we caught up on our lives.

Sadness is something that I guess pervades all of life, but we all could do with a little less. Oregon is a place that brings to mind gentle rains, forests of trees, streams of gurgling water and eagles floating amongst the clouds. It isn’t the place where we expect to see a twenty-something young man wielding a rifle and several handguns enter a small college campus and begin shooting people. I guess we never picture any place where we expect that sort of thing to happen, but it does happen and all too often. The shooting at Umpqua Community College on Thursday morning was reprehensible and detestable. It leaves me sad to note that it is the 45th school shooting in America. The victims and their families didn’t ask for nor want to start their Thursday in that manner. They were just going to school, one of the safest places in any community, or at least it should have been.

And that makes me angry. We as a culture need to have some honest conversation about our infatuation with guns and 45 school shootings, not to mention the thousands of other persons who are killed each year by people using guns. I don’t have an answer for the issue, but at some point we need to have a rational conversation about it. I’m tired of reading, hearing and seeing the carnage across the country.

Sunday begins a new week…maybe it will be one that gives us better news.See you on the first day of the week! Until then -- peace.