A quick look at my little world.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

More Help for the Hurting

It seems the web is buzzing with talk about the VT tragedy. Many are blogging their thoughts - both from a Christ centered perspective and a world view perspective (I didn't want to use the words "secular and Christian" or "secular and sacred" - but there you go).

Jim Burns offers some help dealing with the tragedy, especially helping youth in an article, Terror at Virginia Tech: Jim Burns' Response. It is worth the read and he offers some links for more help at the bottom. They include:

Violence on Campus: Helping Your Kids Cope with Tragedy
Helping Your Kids Feel Safe in a Violent World
When Violence Goes to School
5 Things to do When Tragedy Strikes
Tips for Helping Kids Survive Tragedy

Frank Beemer (football coach at VT) said this will bring the Hokies closer together. He also canceled the spring game (a big deal at VT) because as he said, (full article here)

"There's things more important than football right now. There's a lot of grieving families here and there's going to be a lot of grieving families here Saturday. I just thought it was the right thing to do."

Here is the last lines from the article (quotes from the basketball coach and more from Coach Beemer).

"I'm numb right now thinking about the parents coming to campus to identify
their children," Greenberg told ESPN.com on Monday. "It's hard to put into
words. What would drive someone to do this?

"This is the most peaceful, tranquil and safe environment. But this shows that there is nowhere that you're safe from tragedy or this type of senseless violence. It's devastating."

The convocation Tuesday packed Cassell Coliseum, and more than 20,000 people who didn't fit in the basketball arena watched on a huge video screen inside Lane
Stadium. As the service was winding down, English professor Nikki Giovanni
led the crowd in a chant of "Let's go Hokies," the crowd's volume increasing
with each verse.

"I think what took place at the end of the ceremony, people wanted to let it out and say, `Hey, this one guy's not going to beat us,"' Beamer said. "We're hurt, but this one guy's not going to dictate how we're going to act."

I really like that last line, "We're hurt, but this one guy's not going to dictate how we're going to act."

Terry Bowden said this: (and no, I'm not a huge T.Bowden fan - he just happened to have an article where I was reading - Yahoo.com sports). Read his full article here.

There were only questions – questions that had nothing to do with sports.
Why did this happen? How could this happen? What can we do to make sure it never happens again? Unlike sports talk radio, there are no answers. Hell, everybody has the answers when it comes to sports, but nobody has the slightest idea why something as senseless as this has to happen.

Maybe we all need to redirect our focus a little bit. Maybe we need to spend less time wondering why so many athletes have guns and more time wondering why we have so many guns in the first place. Maybe we need to spend less time worrying about the violence in a hockey game and more time worrying about the violence in a video game. Maybe we need to spend less time hating Barry Bonds and more time
loving our children.

Maybe, just maybe, if we do this, we'll have time to figure out how to make sure something like this never happens again. The thoughts, sympathies and prayers of all of us at Yahoo Sports! go out to the students, faculty, and staff at Virginia Tech.

Wow, so much response, so many words. But what are we doing? Like everyone else, I'm trying to process it by writing and talking about it. But what can we do to make a difference? I think two main things: 1. PRAY - sounds like to easy of an answer, like a cliche, but it should be the first option, the first response. God hears us and comforts us. 2. SERVE - Let people see our faith, spend time with students - not just telling them how to live, but showing them. Jesus called us to be a "light." Are we? Or do we just write about it?

I'm afraid these tragedies will not stop. As long as there is sin in the world, bad stuff will happen. But I believe we can make a difference when it does.

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