It is easy to look at deranged behavior, such as that of the killer in the recent Arizona shootings, and label the person as a monster. And no doubt, what he's done is a monstrosity. As far as how everything pans out with bad intentions or mental illnesses, I'm not going to attempt to sort all that out. It's in God's hands.
But I was thinking about how we as Christians should respond to the situation. It's easy to pray for our "enemy", if by "enemy", we mean someone who annoys us. It's completely different to think about praying compassionately for someone who murdered our child. It's a good thing that God was good enough to love those who murdered his son, because otherwise we would have no hope.
I found an interesting article, talking about how Jared Loughner's parents have been reacting to the situation. Namely, with incredible grief and regret. Hindsight is always 20/20. I don't have any idea what the situation was like growing up in their household, but no doubt they probably feel love for their son, they feel humiliation over what he's done, and they feel great guilt for not being able to have seen this coming and prevented it.
Here is the article.
What I found especially interesting is how other parents of killers are reaching out to them. Even "monsters" have mothers.
I think this situation provides us with a reminder of our responsibility to seek and save the lost. Anyone can respond with hate for a killer, but I wonder how many will respond with loving concern for his soul. I don't diminish the suffering of those who've been injured and murdered. They certainly need our prayers, sympathy, and support. But in all of this, we should be praying for God's presence. To comfort the afflicted, and to reach out to the lost. And often, God seems to prefer being present through imperfect vessels like us.
I will be prayerful that Christians can be around to help the families, but also to help the family of the killer, as well as the man himself.
If there is anyone left who reads this blog, I'm curious what you think about this situation. Hearing from the mothers of people like this offers a pretty different perspective. Christ's law of love should be in effect in this situation, as in every situation. What does this look like here?