I’m not sure if it’s a good thing or a bad thing that the 15th Anniversary of Columbine went largely unnoticed as most of us sat with our families celebrating the Resurrection two days ago. Can you believe it’s been 15 years?
Perhaps it’s a good thing that the anniversary went unnoticed if the horrible Columbine tragedy was eclipsed by the hope and the promise made possible through the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. That’s the only thing that can and should eclipse this type of anniversary. It’s a foreshadowing of sorts. By the grace of God, a day is coming when all this brokenness will finally be undone. . . no more death. . . no more tears. . . no more suffering.
However, it’s not at all a good thing to skim over the anniversary if we do so because we forget or have been hardened to the horror of that day and how many lives were lost or changed. After all, this kind of stuff is so common nowadays that it can become like background noise. We need to know our need. Brokenness serves to remind us of that. Sunday was truly a day to remember both what we’ve done and what God is undoing.
Fifteen years ago this last Easter Sunday, the name “Columbine” went from representing a beautiful flower to representing unprecedented school violence. . . just like that. The 15 year anniversary reminds us of so much. . . including the brokenness in our world, the hurt that belongs to far too many kids, the hope of the Gospel, and the valuable role youth workers play in kids’ lives. Youth workers were first responders 15 years ago in Littleton. Then, they were there to help the community start to heal.
On Sunday, I was reminded of how thankful I am for the sacrifice Christ made on my behalf. And once again on Sunday, I was reminded of how grateful I am for youth workers everywhere and their role in bringing hope and healing. I want to encourage parents, pastors, and church members to be an encouragement to your youth workers. I want to encourage youth workers to bury themselves in the hope-filled Gospel and in turn, bury their Gospel-filled selves into the lives of kids. By the grace of God, it’s making a huge difference.