Today is one of the rare occasions in my life that I can recall being speechless. Totally, unequivocally speechless. Oh, I can type words here on my screen, but I really have nothing to say.
What can I possibly say, after all, when one week ago, a group of Batman-loving movie fans settled in with their popcorn and sodas, only to be terrorized and victimized by a crazy person? That man victimized us all.
I truly don’t want to talk about the shooter. I don’t want to talk about the incident, period. I’d rather lock my doors and pull a blanket over my head and pretend that life is innocent and good and safe.
Hiding from evil, however, will never make the evil go away. It’s there. It’s an unfortunate fact of life. But even though evil may win a battle now and then, like it did last week, it doesn’t have to win the war. It won’t win the war.
Did you hear me?
Evil won’t win.
But if we hide from it, it will win more battles, and that’s where we come in. We can fight this. And by fighting evil, we make the world a more innocent, safe, beautiful place.
So, how do we fight this darkness that seems to lurk around corners?
Well, one way is to join the military or the police force, or some other crime-fighting organization. Those men and women fight evil for the rest of us every day. But that’s not an option for all of us. So what do the rest of us do? How can we help rid the world of evil?
Easy. We turn on the light.
Have you ever noticed that evil seems to hide in the darkness? Just try going to a structure that’s been abandoned for a while, and shine a light. Quite often, all sorts of nasty creatures will scurry. From rats to cockroaches to all kinds of other unnamed critters, they’ll squint their eyes at the light, then run for cover.
Evil is like that.
When we shine the lights of love and goodness and kindness and justice and righteousness, evil scurries. It’s true. Try it and see what happens.
Next time a co-worker dishes some cruel gossip, try saying something nice about the person being gossiped about. Light shined. I’ll bet the gossip will stop.
The next time an injustice of any kind takes place in my presence, I plan to respond with kindness and grace, and do what I can to bring about what’s right and good and just. I might be surprised what a difference one person can make. And when I shine my light, however small it may be, and you shine your light, and everyone around us shines . . . before we know it, the darkness disappears.
But when we turn the lights out and hide, we simply provide a more abundant playground for evil to roam. Oh, we may not win every battle. But we will certainly stop a lot of battles from ensuing, simply because we choose to let our lights shine.
“The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it,” John 1:5.