In response to the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, I have seen many, many people lay the blame on the growing godlessness of American society. God doesn't anchor morality anymore! Church isn't important to people! Prayer isn't allowed in schools! Godlessness!
But speaking as a pastor, it's not godlessness that's the problem. It's godfulness. All kinds of idols capture our worship and attention: money, football, guns, family, and status to name just a
few. We trust these things to bring us stability and security, to prosper us and bring us happiness.
It's jarring, but necessary, to name them as gods. What we would refuse to give up if God called
us to, whether it's our material lifestyle, our support network, or our security, is something we have made into a god.
This is the reason we haven't been able to do anything to stop mass shootings. We have made
our position itself into a god. We worship our solution and know that it alone will save our nation. We have devoted ourselves to our position (and I'm certainly not immune to this idolatry) and this is why we refuse to compromise. We fail to move because our solution is not an idea we believe, but a god we trust.
In this season of Lent, we are called to repentance as we prepare for the joyous celebration of Easter. We read scripture that calls us to turn from sin and live into the kingdom of God. We're called to charity, prayer, and fasting to let God reorient our lives to the kingdom's way. This
Lent, may we repent from our idolatry, humble ourselves, and let God guide us to the kingdom.