Fear Not

We live our lives under the assumptions that the ordinary events of our culture are the best proving grounds for our conclusions about human nature, when in truth it is the extraordinary events, such as the terror of Sandy Hook Elementary, that reveal to us a darkness that we prefer to ignore.  We ask ourselves why? We desperately want answers because such horrid events pose disturbing questions that go to the very core of our being. The root of our probing and the source of our curiosity, although we may not admit it, is always the question, does the type of evil that is responsible for such destruction lie within me? Are the people who do such heinous acts so different from me that I don’t have to worry about the limits of my own sanity?  We wait to hear the words that will comfort our assumptions about ourselves. One does such a horrendous thing because they were abused as a child, or perhaps they used drugs, and the excuses go on and on.  We hope to hear anything that will point us away from our comfortable assumptions that we are intrinsically good, and that the evil that lurks behind such an act is out of the ordinary.  We fear the truth about human nature, about our selves.  Is human nature really that depraved?  Human nature really IS that depraved, and it is for that reason that we need a Savior. And yet, we fear the one extraordinary event in history that could actually be the cure for the very thing that we fear the most.  The extraordinary event to which I refer is Christmas. Christmas poses questions that are most disturbing to the culture in which we live.  So disturbing is it, that we have turned Christmas into a secular event that makes us feel good about ourselves, in order to avoid the possibility of the reality of what happened on that night in Bethlehem, so we don’t have to face the truth of our own depravity. The horror of this unimaginable tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary deeply saddens us, but it also creates in us great fear for it forces us to see the truth about who we really are, souls in need of redemption.  “Fear not…for unto us a child is born.”

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