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Be the Light in the Darkness

By Donna Martin

Our hearts ached as we were bombarded with the news of the shooting of 20 innocent children and 6 adults in Newtown, Connecticut.  The nation was stunned and people asked, “Why did this happen and what can be done to prevent it?”  We do not know the situation of this young man and his family.  We cannot pass judgment on them or say what they should have or should not have done.  Our hearts go out to the families of the shooter, the victims, and the survivors.

One ironic thing that happens in times like these is that somehow the debate of separation of church and state disappears for a few hours as people turn to the one source that can help in these times of great grief – God.   Suddenly it is fine for people to gather in a public high school auditorium to pray together and to seek the comfort that only God can give.  Newscasters and politicians comment that these people are in “our thoughts and prayers.”  Bible verses (the words from God) are read to give comfort to the suffering.  Amazing Grace, A Mighty Fortress is Our God and other hymns that normally would have been banned from public gatherings give comfort and remind us of God’s love.  And even though many in our country ignore God’s love on a day to day basis, no one is complaining about it in these dark moments.  For a moment we are close to being “one nation under God” once again.  But in a few months, or weeks, or even days many will return to their busy way of life and God’s love will be ignored.  His majesty mocked.  His rules ignored, and our leaders will wonder what can be done to prevent this from happening again.

Until Christ returns sin and evil will remain in this world.  Ephesians 6:12 says, “For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rules, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.”

So what do we do?  The next verses tell us.  “Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand.  Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace.  In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.  Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.  And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.  With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” (Ephesians 6:13-18)

So as this New Year arrives make a New Year’s resolution to read your Bible daily, pray for our nation’s leaders and for your family, friends, and neighbors.  Be Jesus to those around you.   Be the “light of the world” in public and in your home.

The Martins currently present “Happy Together” marriages seminars for churches and organizations.  To schedule a seminar call Michael at 940-735-1515. They also publish a weekly “Happy Together” Blog about family and marriage issues.  You can order copies of their new books Dancing With Death and 366 Tidbits We Have Learned in 14,610 Days of Marriage, read, and subscribe to their “Happy Together” Blog by logging onto the Martin’s website at


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