Tuesday, April 17, 2007

When Men Are Called To Sacrifice

I'm speaking to men as I write this. I want to speak into your chests, men.

The awful shootings at Virginia Tech University have prompted me to think about bravery and courage. Why didn't someone rush this guy and take him out? This guy had pistols, reloaded, and was systematically firing. He wasn't sniping at people from around corners. A number of the victims were shot multiple times.

Here is one account, emphasis mine:

"One of his fellow students, Trey Perkins, was among only two in the class of at least 15 who weren't struck.

Perkins told FOX News he flipped some desks over on their sides to create an obstacle between the gunman and the students who hadn't fallen in the first spray of bullets. He considered jumping out a window, he said, but he didn't want to abandon the wounded.

"So many people were laying in the room and still conscious and I didn't just want to leave them all there," Perkins told FOX. "So we tried to block the door."He guessed that only about six of them made it out alive.

Questions surfaced about why students didn't try to rush the gunman and force him to the ground, but Perkins said there wasn't a way to do it safely.

"He came in with two guns and he immediately opened fire," he said. "I would say within 10 seconds, there were so many people down. He wasn't in any location to try to tackle him. I thought about getting up to try to do it, but he was just shooting. There was no way to get over the desks."

Source: FoxNews story

Two important things before I go on:

1. News reports are still coming out about what happened on that campus. There may have been some heroic acts that I am not aware of. I don't know the full story.

2. Please understand that I have been on the business end of guns before. I've had a pistol held to my head. Another time a man fired shots at me and God spared me. I know first-hand what an awful rush of confusing feelings and the paralysis of fear that can hit you in those moments. I am completely sympathetic to anyone in that situation. I am not condeming anyone's actions here.

Men, I am speaking to you. I challenge you to predecide now how you will handle these kinds of situations. Yes, you must be discerning. But if someone starts shooting at people -- innocent people who carry the image of God and are precious, you can't help them or yourself by being passive.

We're the men. We're built to defend and protect and serve others, even at the cost of our own life. Especially at the cost of our own life. In Christ, it's not our life any more, we're simply stewards of it.

Rush the man, and knock him down, with every bit of strength God gives you. Take bullets if necessary, and keep going if you can. Your safety is not part of the equation you control -- let that be in God's hands. Dying is not the worst thing that can happen to you. If there is another man with you, both of you rush him. You may well save many lives, including the shooter.

Predeciding means you are more likely to do the right thing in the moment.

This is a good thing to talk about -- including our fears -- with our boys.

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