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  • Writer's pictureJack Hager

Ranting and Venting

I don't expect many to read this.

I am typing for my own sanity; I type faster than I can write so this is more a journal entry than a blog post.

The tragic and maddening slaughter of the kids yesterday rages through my heart and mind. Watching the news and its inherent it CNN or Fox...infuriates.

Ecclesiastes 5.2 reads, "Do not be hasty to speak, and do not be impulsive to make a speech before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few."

I am often too hasty in speech; too unaware that my words can be interpreted wrongly; ignoring the "just because it comes into my head doesn't mean it has to come out of my mouth" counsel.

But I want to record some thoughts/opinions about yesterday's events. So here goes:

  • There is no "Christian" answer to guns (unless you are a true pacifist - with whom I would disagree strongly but would respect). We (broadbrush) let opinions about masks divide us, and that pales compared to the carnage sown in Texas. You may well have a strong opinion; but don't say you have "the" Christian response. Genuine Christ followers will disagree on this and many other issues.

  • As a felon I can not have a weapon in my possession. It carries an automatic five years. But for the last couple years, for the first time in my life since parole, I wish I could carry. And if I did have a weapon, and someone threatened me, my family, or others, say, in a mall; I would draw and shoot center mass...repeatedly - with absolutely no remorse.

  • That said, I support - as an American and as a Christian (and God knows those terms are not synonymous) - "reasonable" gun control; recognizing that "reasonableness" is in the eye of the beholder.

  • I think it ridiculous that an 18 year old can't legally drink, but in most places may purchase a weapon. (but can enlist and learn how to use weapons of various types..)

  • I am 100 percent behind COMPLETED background checks before the sale of a weapon - whether in a gun store, on ebay, or at a garage sale.

  • I see absolutely no reason that a gun designed PRIMARILY as a military/law enforcement weapon should be available to the general public. (lost a few friends with that sentence). Nor should "standard" guns be easily convertible to a weapon designed to be used against people.

  • I find it tragically ironic that some of the most vocal people against weapons are also pro choice.

  • I would love to see secure entry points, and armed (trained) personnel at EVERY school in the nation. Obviously (to those familiar with math) this can't be done by LEOs. The suggestions are valid - retired cops, retired military etc. But do you think people will line up to serve in such a way? What if I shoot a person of color (as happened in a Kansas City high school recently...and the guy was vilified by many). I don't believe there is a shortage of people who would be WILLING to serve in such a way; but won't for fear of being labeled as racist or worse.

  • For my other stumbling followers of Jesus Christ - is it possible we can focus on the MAIN thing instead of arguing about mickey mouse stuff like the present day ministry of the Holy Spirit, 'security,' modes of baptism, eschatology and more??? Can we admit that as disciples we are brothers and sisters in Christ, but not identical twins?Can we do the hard work of, as individuals and local churches, coming up with a list of the non-negotiables? If you don't believe in the concept of hell I wouldn't call on you for silent prayer. If you don't believe in the virgin birth I can't knowingly fellowship with you. But if you believe in the rapture and I don't, we can work together, pray together, love together. Can we, whether vocational or (how I hate this term) 'lay people' be unafraid to say "I'm not sure," or, gasp, "I don't know" about some fuzzy issues?

  • Can we who claim to be Christians recognize that America is not now and never has been a "Christian" nation? Can we recognize that "getting God back in school" is not the answer, since our Constitution (which is not inspired by God) guarantees freedom of religion, not freedom of Christianity alone?

  • Though we don't shake our heads and not get involved politically, socially, etc; can we recognize that 2 Tim 3.1-5 is irrevocable? Yes, we should strive to be peacemakers etc; but we should recognize the probability of God's judgment etc.

  • When I served in Vietnam the mantra of Colonel Patton was "Stay alert; stay alive." We all need to live that way. "Situational awareness" is absolutely necessary.

  • A church/ministry without a security team is stupid.

  • Not everything can be monitored by law enforcement (by the way, CIA, NSA etc - no problem with you monitoring EVERY communication of mine). "See something say something" needs to be embedded in each mind.

I dare not fake it, nor preach/teach above my experience...I must pray more often. I must continue to "grow in the grace and knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ." I must, well, keep stiving to fulfill my personal "mission statement":

Know Jesus intimately (so I can...)

Love Jesus intensely (so I can...)

Serve Jesus intentionally,

and help others to do likewise.

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