During my door-to-door phase of campaigning last year, I met a man. We spoke at length about many things and over the last year, have struck up a friendship. During our initial conversation, I mentioned my belief in Christ. This man scoffed at the idea of Christ because bad things happen. I agreed bad things do indeed happen, but based on my experience God is real and without the loving grace of my heavenly Father and Christ, who willingly left His heavenly home, to build a bridge I could cross to my heavenly Father, I would not be here and neither would my children.
We have had several conversations, through text, that have centered on Christianity and Christ. He usually is the one who initiates these conversations. Today I received a text from him which resulted in a “conversation” between him and me. He began by discussing the shooting in California, but as usually the case, came to God. So here is how it goes with my friend as D. and I as Y.
D: Our 355th mass shooting this year. Insane maybe? These incidences are anything but senseless. The individual is largely determined by wider mores. The offenders simply are acting out what they now see as acceptable ways of dealing with their social frustrations. You see it, the unmooring of the individual from normative social values, in the parsings of explanations for Trump’s continued hold on the Republican base. The power brokers have used every wedge issue to fill their political ranks. The party line is that society no longer works for them, is against them. Now their creations are acting for themselves. A house built on hate, distrust, fear, cannot hold. The melting pot is now a violent mixed salad. There is no way to put humpty back together again, more are going (to) die because at its core, the core of human psychology, is fear. Fear rationalized as freedom. Fear rationalized as cultural virtue. Our red state nativists have unleashed, have sacrificed the most base of our impulses. Let the games begin.
Y: And yet guns will be blamed because it’s easier to blame the tool than the person using the tool because that would require reflecting on what the past three/four generations have put (out). The “hate establishment” people from the 60s went into educational, mental health, political institutions. And here we are…
D: You gotta have a gun to have a shooting. Most were legally purchased, and used by many persons who have not been deemed unfit for ownership (thank you NRA, Bush boys) so…
Right wingnuts share the same core values as the extremists, e.g. women are second class citizens and property, homosexuals deserve death, the Earth is your toilet, knee-jerk violence is the answer to all debates/problems and the invisible man in the sky supersedes all logic or scientific facts. We are at war with ourselves.
Y: Ok. Pretty sure their apartment was filled with explosives and bomb making materials. How does ones explain Chicago? A city that has some of the toughest gun laws in the nation. It’s deeper than that, i.e. gun ownership/laws,
D: Again, you can’t shoot someone without a gun. Gun laws are like drug laws or driving laws, or tax laws, or sex laws – laughable to the people who want to do us harm. The only people who should have guns are the cops and military. This outdated second amendment bullshit was valid at a time when this nation was beginning, and militias were our only defense (no army, navy, air force or marines)
Y: How does an individual defend himself or protect his other rights, e.g. Third Amendment, without the second amendment? You are right: a person cannot “shoot” without a gun but why is it no one asks why society has broken down to the point that a person feels killing others is the only answer? Again, it’s easier to blame guns because it requires no self reflection. And do we really want to live in a country where the only one with guns is the government? I don’t. We are already witnessing an over militarized federal govn. EPA? IRS? Ag Dept? Do they really need guns? No, but they have their own armed units. As for freedom, it only works when there is personal (individual) responsibility. We are seeing everything but that in society.
D: We, as a nation, have for too long embraced violence, greed, anger, to the point to where the right has not only ignored but actually condoned and encouraged murder (abortion clinics, homosexuals at random, etc) in the name of the most violent and cruelest book ever written, the Bible. Fact. Now it’s their turn, apparently. Btw, where do you think the Bible was written? (For all the hilariously ignorant “Shariah Law” commentators)
Y: (Ah, here it is, I think to myself, as it seems to always come to this.) So it’s the Bible’s fault?
D: The very reason the world is, and will remain, at ideological war.
Y: So the world will remain at an ideological and mechanical war because of the Bible?
D: Well, that’s where it all began. “My god is better than your god, and is the only true god,” says EVERYONE! All about control, power, the taking of land and its resources, including human beings (remember slavery, the native Americans, the Gulf “War”) all the while espousing virtues of liberty, freedom, and the pursuit of happiness. Makes me laugh, then cry.
Y: Ghangas Khan, Pol Pot, Stalin, Hitler, NK Prime Minister, Castro, Nero – these are all examples of men who rejected the Bible on every level yet they are some of the cruelest men who unleashed pure evil on people.
D: Christians still have them beat, combined. Fact.
Y: (Again I think, here we are, the heart of the matter) History is brimming over with examples of depravity that have nothing to do with the Bible. The Bible we have today wasn’t in existence when Egypt enslaved thousands or Babylon conquered Jerusalem and murdered and enslaved thousands. The Mayan kings didn’t know of the Bible when they used the heads of enemies to play ball.
D: By the way, Hitler was a Christian and a Catholic. Fact.
Y: No, he wasn’t. He rejected Christianity, banned Bible and imprisoned/killed pastors who spoke the Bible and against him.
D: YES HE WAS. I HAVE EVERYTHING EVER WRITTEN ON HIM AND HIS WRITINGS.
Y: He declared Nazism the state religion and had (the) Bible replaced with Mein Kempf. Paying lip service to Christianity is not the same thing as being a Christian. (Name), your battle is not with me.
D: Remember the Crusades? Well, the Muslims haven’t. And that stupendously offensive song all the inbreds teach their children to sing, so gleefully, “Onward Christian Soldiers”? Guess what that song is about –
Y: (Name), your battle isn’t with me. I’m not going to argue with you. It seems you have fixated on Christianity to the exclusion of everything else. I consider you my friend and I get why you choose me to let loose your disgust, or think so anyway, but Christ is not the things you say. People, or the human heart is a dark place without the love of Christ. People have used all types of props to include the Bible to justify their actions. However, Christ came to save, His love does change hearts.
D: “My Struggle” was written about his real (and imagine) battle with all controlling jews, the very reason we were attacked on 9/11 (Bin Laden’s own words) I’m not anti-semitic, btw, and no my battle isn’t with you, my friend.
And there it is and always seems to come to – an internal struggle with accepting or rejecting the truth of Christ.
“For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him, might be saved.” John 3:16-17
Christ does not barge through the door of the heart; He stands at the door and softly knocks. It is up to each person to open the door and let Him in or to remain locked inside, never knowing the freedom, the love, the grace, the salvation, that comes by letting in Christ.