On the Sunday before 4th of July I attended church service with my wife and daughter. During the middle of the service I got a text from my wife saying: They said a white man walked in and walked right back out.
They referred to our friends sitting behind us who had a clear view of the front door. I knew what my wife was thinking by that text.
What if that white man was scoping out the church to enact a shooting.
Fear struck my mind too. At that moment I wished I had a concealed carry license and a gun on me. Whenever I get those two things I do plan to carry it with me in the church. I attend a Black church and lately Black people have been targeting by white extremists at churches, grocery stores, and the police. I refuse to let my family be a victim of hate by as much as I can control.
Since I didn’t have a gun on me, I thought about sitting in the hallway in case the white man came back with a gun so I could warn the church and possibly stop or slow down multiple shootings.
Thankfully, the white man never came back and we all went home safely. But I wonder why the white man came in and left? Was he looking for a church that day and got the wrong address? Did he know what church he was going to and decided to not attend at the last minute?
Only God knows what that man’s intentions were that day. And I thank God that our church did not end up on the news that day either.
My wife also said that God didn’t give us a spirit of fear.
And she’s absolutely right.
God did not call us to live in fear, but it’s by our disobedience to God that gives us a spirit of fear. It’s when Adam and Eve chose to eat from the forbidden tree that gave them the spirit of fear. The knowledge of good and evil.
We no longer live in the days when you can feel safe as long as you do the right thing. As long as you live in the right neighborhood. As long as you hang around the right people. People are dying at movie theaters, churches, concerts, grocery stores—some of the most innocent activities peopled can do.
As I said before, my wife was right when she said God did not give us the spirit of fear. And we should not live in fear because fear is crippling and can often cause more harm than good. But we should have a healthy fear. We should acknowledge that at any place and time someone can open fire with a military style rifle. I pray that me and my family will never have to encounter such a situation. But I also want to do the practical of keeping a firearm on me because mass shooting happen way too often.