Hurt people hurt people!
That quote is a smack in the face of reality here in my small Upstate New York community these days . Two young sisters(ages 3 and 10) were murdered, not by a stranger, but by their own father this past Labor Day weekend before he turned the gun on himself.
The family was too distraught to be interviewed on TV so, we heard the all to cliché feedback from the neighbor who was absolutely astonished that this man could be capable of such a thing. ‘He seemed like a very nice man. Very soft-spoken and easy-going’ she said. ‘And the girls were just beautiful and well-behaved ‘
Her description of her young neighbors was, I am sure, at some point, fairly accurate – it just wasn’t current. Why? Because, she also said that his wife had recently taken her daughter and moved out of the house back in with her parents. It is my experience that a man in that situation is rarely ever ‘soft-spoken‘ and ‘easy-going‘. And, she also indicated that he had not been home for an extended period of time. At some point between her last contact and the gruesome discovery of three dead bodies in a tent by a campground owner, another seemingly well-adjusted “Mr. Nice Guy” took a detour into the dark side of his soul.
We are told by investigators that this young man shot his two daughters multiple times while they were asleep in a tent near Lake George before turning the gun on himself. For many who knew him and for some of us who will observe this tragedy from a distance we will struggle to understand how he could have ever sought such a violent solution to his situation.
Don’t misunderstand me. I am not defending this young man’s actions. This young man left this world a murderer and there is no explanation that can be given to justify what he has done. None – period!
At the same time, we need to realize that each and every one of us has that same potential to act out in similar horrific ways. Every one of us – even you! Wounds transform us into someone we are not. Left untreated, we become infected with bitterness and void of forgiveness. Without intervention, our perspective becomes tainted, our thinking becomes illogical, and our actions become irrational.
Oswald Chambers writes, “Let the past sleep, but let it sleep on the bosom of Christ, and go into the irresistible future with him.” Tragedies such as this cause me to pause and examine myself. They give me reason to get up and go look in the mirror. Not just any mirror, but that special mirror that reflects the image of the ‘internal’ me. What about you? When’s the last time you took a look inside yourself? Don’t let your wounds transform you into something you are not – let Christ transform you into who God designed you to be!