I was prompted to consider something this morning upon hearing of all the young people, in Florida and elsewhere, rallying for politicians to act in the wake of yet another shooting. The chanting of the masses makes it easy to take a stand. With a crowd around us, we all feel a bit more courageous.
My thoughts have been on the young man who admits to using this weapon to take these lives. I’ve not been thinking how awful, evil or twisted he is. I’ve been wondering who had the opportunity to speak or step into his life or at the least not heap any further hurt into his life with words like freak, psycho, bad kid or hopeless.
How many neighbors, classmate’s parents, teachers and even police officers have entered in and out of his life? We’ve yet to hear of any who were courageous enough to invest in a life and/or into his single-parent family. Yes, he is responsible for his actions and consequences. No person fixes another person.
My considerings and prayers are that as these young people rally and rise up, they remember they have the opportunity to take courageous action daily: in classes, on teams, at work, on social media and at church. May they offer life with their words to “that kid” and offer kindness by example to the weird or different kid.
And may we not-so-young people do the same. They are always watching our lead.
Courage stands without a crowd behind it.