Power. Love. A sound mind.

Yesterday morning, I sat in the rocking chair in my six-week-old Jessen’s room and watched him sleep. School shootings have always wrecked me. But now they do on a different level. I found myself thinking about his first day of kindergarten. How it’s supposed to be such an exciting day, but one that I’m already so scared of.

2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that God has not given us a spirit of fear, which can sound tone deaf in the wake of horrific tragedies like Tuesday’s shooting in Uvalde. But the verse doesn’t end there. Rather, it says we have a spirit of power, love and a sound mind.

Power – to demonstrate the strength to stand up for what is right. To courageously bring about change individually and collectively. To take action when it’s desperately needed. To boldly speak out and advocate for what we believe in.

Love – to show compassion towards those who are grieving. To demonstrate love through our actions, not just our words and prayers. To be willing to compromise when it’s needed in order to bring about change. To lay down our political opinions – even our rights at times – for the sake of the greater good.

Sound mind – to use the resources, tools and common sense God gave us to make wise decisions. To know the best course to take. To listen to reason. To be willing to learn, grow, even change.

There is nothing passive about those attributes, and we don’t have to be either. Avoidance and apathy are never the answer. God gave us a spirit of power, love and a sound mind for moments like this when change needs to happen, when hearts need to be healed and when wisdom needs to guide our actions. May we urgently step into that calling now, for the sake of our children and for a hurting nation.

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