Don't give evil what it wants! #UCCSHOOTING / by Ryan Cole

Last night I was so affected by the news of the shooting in Oregon that I could barley sleep. When I did sleep, I dreamed of the shooting....it was haunting. At the time yesterday, when I heard about the shooting the shooter had not been identified officially. All I knew was that those who were Christians were specifically targeted! "Are you a Christian?" Rang in my ears all night long!

In my dream, I was in the midst of a shooting and saw the shooter (even though I had not seen him yet in pictures). There is much more to the dream, but one thing I will say right now is that I became extremely aware of what we have fully stepped into, not only as followers of Christ but as those who stand against evil on a daily basis....seeking to do good in the world and make an impact.

EVIL is real....and it comes in the form of deception, media propaganda, and political propaganda. All to glorify and make celebrities of those who do harm. This time we must refuse to glorify this murderer! We must refuse posting his picture! We must not speak of his name and give evil the fame and glory that it desires. This man was obviously tormented by evil forces of darkness! But darkness did not win....and can NEVER win!

To the brave men and women who stood proud to profess their faith in Jesus Christ even after seeing their fellow believers brutally murdered...WE HONOR YOU! We know that this day you have been welcomed into heaven with great joy! Evil has not won!

To the families of these victims we pray for not only peace, but a fervor and an undeniable strength from above to continue in your Christian faith and allow God to work through you, despite the circumstances that seem overwhelming right now!

I call for everyone of THE FAITH to rise in this season of confrontation and stand courageously against the forces of darkness! Continue to let your light shine and don't be intimidated for one moment! Don't be afraid to speak of your faith at work, or at school, or in your community! Don't allow your liberties to be trampled upon by evil political motivations! We the righteous are as bold as a LION! This scripture God brings before me!

Proverbs 28:1-2 (NLT)

1 The wicked run away when no one is chasing them,
    but the godly are as bold as lions.

2 When there is moral rot within a nation, its government topples easily.
    But wise and knowledgeable leaders bring stability.

What I gather from this scripture is that....EVIL thrives in the chase. Evil loves to be glorified and put on display! But we must REFUSE! Be Bold Christians! Be Bold, people of Faith! OVERCOME EVIL WITH GOOD! That is why I refuse to mention or post the name of the shooter in this tragedy!

We must pray for the rising leaders of this country, that they would be full of wisdom and knowledge! Not the wisdom of this world, but the wisdom of GOD!

As it concerns politics...don't be deceived by political figures who take every moment of tragedy to promote their own agendas! This isn't a gun control issue, this is a moral and cultural issue. This is a manifestation of the culture that has been promoted in our country through media, entertainment, and political deception.

The gun laws that are already in place are not properly enforced, and certain cities with the most gun laws are still overrun with gun violence. THIS IS A CULTURAL ISSUE. This is a MORAL Issue. When the moral fabric of a nation is torn, evil will rise. We must look again to the foundation of our nation and re-establish the biblical moral structure that we have removed, one standard at a time! It's about holy and righteous standards! People of God, rise and live lives that reflect the faith that you so preach!

Isaiah 59:19 (KJV)

19 So shall they fear the name of the Lord from the west, and his glory from the rising of the sun. When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him.

My heart goes out to the community and families of those directly effected by this vicious crime. May forgiveness fill your hearts and may you experience the love of Jesus in a tangible and real way! We forgive...and we rise as followers of Christ!