I often like to think there are pockets of the world that are still safe. Where the world hasn't encroached. Where people can walk without fear of random violence.
Yesterday one of those pockets was shocked when a 19 year old went into Westroads Mall in Omaha, opened fire, killed eight people, and then committed suicide. Where's Westroads you ask? LA? NYC? Another big city we all know but don't live in. No, Omaha, Nebraska. The middle of the Heartland. Mecca if you get me to talking about roots, values, and home.
Westroads Mall is one of the big ones in the largest city in Nebraska. It would be packed with Christmas shoppers this time of year. Yet, for a reason we may never understand, a 19 year old decided today was a day to act out on his pain, hurt, and rage, and inflict it on random individuals at the Mall.
In a state where the raging debate has centered on who the Huskers football head coach would be in 2008 (Welcome back, Bo Pelini), the focus has suddenly shifted to the truly important. To matters of life and death.
Some days it's hard to see God's hand. Yet I know it's there. Even in the midst of tragedies.