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What just happened?

Today a popular freshman boy stood up at his school in our area and shot four kids, killed another and then turned the gun on himself. He “didn’t fit the stereotype” of school gunmen say the media.

It’s heartbreaking that a young man this age felt his only option was this. It breaks my heart. How? Why?

Although never anywhere near this distress, I have been a part of a big community. Involved, engaged, active, pretty popular and always busy. Surrounded by people and yet desperately lonely. Smiling and yet desperately hurting inside. Even feeling like there was no way out of this space I was in. Have you ever felt that way?

Part of me wonders if our world is so fractured that we are all present, but there is no depth in our relationships. Sure people know our name, our cubicle, the car we drive and the surface level facts, but behind our smiles and casual relationships, what is the truth?  Does anyone really know the pain I’m in? The truth that we are hiding in fear of “too much information” or not looking like we have it together? What will they think? It makes me so sad.

I’ve been there. I know how lonely even the busiest, most popular world can feel. It makes me wonder if someone in my life has reached out and wanted a true friend. More time. Just someone to listen. I wonder if this kid had someone he could confide in? His parents did all they could. They sound amazing. I hurt for them.

I can’t help but try to be more aware of the people in my life and make sure I slow down enough make them feel heard, understood and loved. And to pray for those parents. It’s a sad, sad day.

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