Doing and Being

Doing and Being

Pentecost 132


On Oct. 4, 2012, a young man called 911, telling a dispatcher, “Uh, I just killed my mom and my sister….”I felt like they were just suffocating me, in a way,” he told the dispatcher, according to a recording of the 911 call. “Obviously, you know, I’m pretty, I guess, evil.”  Responding Parker County deputies found [a woman] and her daughter dead of multiple gunshot wounds inside the house on [XX] Lane in [subdivision and town].  The young man was arrested at the scene.  In a written statement, he told investigators that he had devised a plan to kill several family members after watching [a] remake of the movie “Halloween,” in which a boy murders relatives.


The young man used a gun stolen from his grandfather, a retired law enforcement official, to commit the slayings.  He had originally planned, he later told officials, to kill other members of his family but after killing his mother and sister, he placed the gun on the kitchen counter and called 911.  “I know now though that I’m done with killing. It’s the most dreadful and terrifying thing I will ever experience. And what happened last night will haunt me forever.”


We think we know so much and especially as young adults and teenagers, we can be intensely certain that we think we know something.  Earlier this week another young man shot and killed his parent before climbing a fence onto a schoolyard playground and opening fire.  Before going to the school, he called his grandparents who were the ones to discover the young man’s father dead.  The deceased was their son.  At this time no motive has been given nor do we know the intimate details of this young man’s life.  Clearly there was a disconnect between his valuing life and his actions, though.


We study to prevent knowledge and life from passing us by, from slipping through the hours of our living.  This series is about making a difference, about making the ordinary count for something, making life extraordinary.  We do this in the connections we form.


Did what I do yesterday have value?  Did I connect with another, friend or stranger?  Was there a purpose for my being?  Often we feel helpless and perhaps hopeless.  For the youngest victim of this most recent shooting who is clinging to life while on life support, there is hope within his family and community.  As we go about our daily living, we need to delve into the answers to such basic question and ways of answering such questions. 



We will each have our own answers and paths of both learning and exploration.  The future is, after all, ours to construct and write.  Life is not about being haunted.  Life is for living and living for the best outcomes for all of mankind.  Enjoy today.  Live your faith.  Exist; believe; rejoice.  Mostly, I hope you smile – at another but also at yourself.

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