I remember as a kid…
The challenge Santa Claus must have to fly around the world, stopping at every home, and only using a sleigh and reindeer… It was amazing that he could accomplish so much, live on milk and cookies, and stay awake for 24 hours. And where did he carry all those gifts? Didn’t he need to restock?
It must have been magic!
Back then, late 50’s and early 60’s, we did not have global communication like we take for granted today. Local news would map Santa’s route and let all the kiddies know about the time he would be arriving in the area. So, go to bed. Be good. Wait until the morning. Then the presents would be under the tree!
Today. Instantaneously we know what’s happening anywhere around the globe. From down the street, to across the globe, we know what’s good, bad, and ugly. I know there’s a lot of good, but we seldom hear about it. The bad and ugly are rapidly posted and we zoom in to the latest and the ugliest. In New York. D.C. Paris. Turkey. Syria. Israel. Baghdad. Nice. Did I forget any place? This list is rapidly growing as terrorist target the innocents. They do not fight stand-up wars with armies, rather, their goal is create terror with innocents.
Terrorism, in its broadest sense, is defined as the use or threatened use of violence (terror) in order to achieve a political, religious, or ideological aim. It is classified as fourth-generation warfare and as a violent crime. In modern times, terrorism is considered a major threat to society and therefore illegal under anti-terrorism laws in most jurisdictions. It is also considered a war crime under the laws of war when used to target non-combatants, such as civilians, neutral military personnel, or enemy prisoners of war. Over 300,000 died due to terrorist attacks from 2006 to 2014.
In this modern world of instant news, terrorism terrifies quickly. We immediately witness events as they occur. Talking heads will spend hours, days and weeks analyzing and reliving all the moments of terror. We curtail our travel and avoid crowded locations. We become super aware, and yes, some become super afraid.
Over the past few years I have traveled overseas several times. Paris. London. Tel Aviv. Jordan. Not as widely traveled as others, but these few trips get me to focus on my surroundings. I do not want to become a casualty. These recent terrorist activities may keep me from picking certain destinations at certain times or seasons, but I refuse to be defeated,
A popular quote has been attributed to many different sources and you are encouraged to check it out yourself.
“The Only Thing Necessary for the Triumph of Evil is that Good Men Do Nothing.” ~Quote Investigator
The key thing is, we must step up to the task of standing up to evil…even if it costs us something. That’s what soldiers, first responders, police and all those others who rush into danger. Remember 9/11? Fire and Police departments, men and women, ran toward the Twin Towers on. When most fled, their job was to interject themselves into the event and do everything possible to save and protect.
From Wikipedia, these statistics show us the first reponders who lost their life. (Source)
Of the 2,977 victims killed in the September 11 attacks, 411 were emergency workers in New York City who responded to the World Trade Center. This included:
- 343 firefighters (including a chaplain and two paramedics) of the New York City Fire Department (FDNY);
- 37 police officers of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Police Department (PAPD);
- 23 police officers of the New York City Police Department (NYPD); and
- 8 emergency medical technicians and paramedics from private emergency medical services
What would you do?
If this is your career than you have probably put your life on the line often. We are thankful for your service, and your sacrifice. If you are military then you are in the same position. We are thankful for your service.
The rest of us need to learn how to do our part better. If we are not a defender or responder, then we should support those who lead the way. Keep our eyes open for danger. Report the problems. Pray for those who put their lives on the line.
Jesus taught one of his first messages on a Mount called Mt Beattitudes. I’ve been to this place on the edge of the Sea of Galilee. Gathered around and below him, Jesus begins to teach like no other rabbi before him. One lesson came to mind as I wrote this blog.
“You have heard that it was said, ‘YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.’ But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven; for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust.” (Matthew 5:43-45 NKJV)
Regardless of how we feel about the terrorist, and the terror they mete out… We should pray for them. This is the role of a Christian. I need to do my part. How about you?