Today I was reminded of how fragile life is and how no matter where we are, we are never truly "safe". Anything can happen at anytime. This could easily cause us to have a spirit of fear, but it shouldn't. Yes, we live in a fallen world where bad stuff happens.. but we also have a God who is in control of ALL things and all things happen according to His will (ok yes, man is free to make His own choices but that's a topic for a whole other post... maybe after a few more seminary classes I'll tackle that topic on here... but for now let's just go with God being in control, because He is). That doesn't mean everything will always go like we want it to go or think it should go, and allot of times we don't understand why certain things happen. But we do know that all things work together for good for those that love God and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28). We may not consider it good in our earthly, human minds, and we may never understand how a certain situation could be "good" until we enter into Heaven. But we do know what God has said in His word and we know that His word never fails.
Last night around 11 o'clock two of my friends were coming in from hanging out with some friends. They were just parking their car across the little street from our dorm hall (on campus) when two men confronted them and forced them out of their car at gunpoint, making them leave behind everything that was in the car (purses, phones, keys etc).
Another girl who happened to be sitting in her car about to go to her dorm had seen these two men jump the fence (this fence is very tall with barbed wire across the top) in order to get on campus. She was already in the process of calling 911 as the armed robbery was taking place.
Police were on the scene quickly but not in time to stop the theft from taking place and since the stolen car had a student ID sticker on it campus police who were guarding the front gate didn't notice anything suspicious as the robbers drove the car right off campus.
While significant material possessions were lost, thankfully no one was seriously injured and the situation could have definitely been a lot worse. Like our dean of students said in a meeting this evening "Multiple handguns were drawn and ready, yet no shots were fired".
So while I was sleeping in my bed last night, two of my friends were having guns pulled and pointed at them only a few yards away, right outside my dorm window. It could have been worse, there could have been deaths, and there's no reason it couldn't have been me out there. Yeah, it's a little unnerving and its a little scary and I'll probably have a little trouble falling asleep tonight. But even in the midst of this I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that my God is still in control and that I am in His will, exactly where He wants me right now. I know that doesn't mean I won't get hurt, but it does mean He won't bring me into any situation He's not willing to carry me through and if He chooses to bring me home then I know that's what His will is and He will do whatever brings Him glory... and I'm ok with that.
This has been a nice little reality check for all of us here on campus. I know most of us have considered the seminary to be a pretty safe place and it is one of the safest, most secure facilities in the city. And these girls did nothing wrong. It wasn't even 11 yet last night, they weren't by themselves, and they even had at least one guy go with them out that evening (they had already dropped him off at his dorm when the robbery took place). They were as cautious as possible and yet their lives were threatened. The dean of students met with all the students living in my dorm tonight to go over some safety precautions the seminary is taking to make the campus more secure and I know all of us will be more careful and more aware of our surroundings even on campus... but honestly no matter what we do there will always be loop holes... it's impossible to create a completely and perfectly safe campus... and even if that were possible what would we do then? Never leave campus? Eventually you have to make a trip to walmart, right? Besides, we're commanded to go out into the world and preach the gospel. We can't live in fear of what will happen if we leave our little safe haven (which probably isn't even as safe as you think it is).
So what happened last night is kinda scary, and yes, it's been the main thing on my mind all day. But basically while we need to be cautious and take measures to secure this campus and use our God given smarts to stay safe, at the same time we need to realize that God is in control and the only things that will happen to us are things He allows and if He allows them to happen then we know they have a purpose and that in the end they will help in accomplishing the main goal, to bring glory to God.
wow that was like the longest run-on sentence I think I've ever written. haha