Monday's Food for Thought

Monday’s Food for Thought: Love Is A Weapon to Destroy Evil

So, I grew up in the American South. The deep south. Where football isn’t just a fun game that promotes casual rivalries. It is much more than that, so much more. I’m thankful that I grew up in a family that had a healthy and exciting approach to the football phenomenon. Unfortunately, for many it has become their religion.

I write this because I heard recently about Penn State’s legendary coach, Joe Paterno, being fired from the University after 46 years as head football coach. I grew up hearing his name and he seemed a legend.  He was recently fired because he overlooked another coach’s ongoing sexual abuse towards children and my heart breaks over such a tragedy that affects so many.

As a mother, I cannot even begin to imagine the atrocity of these situations.  It is unthinkable.  I immediately want to point my finger and cry out in hatred towards the coach who did these awful acts. I start to do just that…and then my heart is lead to thoughts like: “how on earth could this man have done this?” “what on earth must have happened to him to make him like this?” I realize that his life must be in an incredibly painful and pitiful place to ever act the way he did. It doesn’t excuse it of course; (and I am so thankful justice is being done) it just makes me ache all the more for all the brokenness in this world to begin with. It makes me long for healing on both sides of this tragic story.

This leads me to sharing this beautiful piece on redemption and healing taking place in Rwanda for our Monday’s Food for Thought. Through an astonishing and miraculous effort “As We Forgive” has become a movement unparalleled in any other post-genocide country. This photo essay “Love is a Weapon to Destroy Evil” covered by CNN says it all. Hate turned to forgiveness. Love used to fight evil. It’s breathtaking. I hope it speaks hope to you, as it did for me and provides much food for thought today.



3 thoughts on “Monday’s Food for Thought: Love Is A Weapon to Destroy Evil

  1. There is certainly brokenness on all sides of this situation, bit it’s important to remember the qualifier in scripture for forgiveness: repentance. So far, we haven’t seen that from any of the coaches involved. It is the children who are the victims and deserve our sympathy, not the coach who was fired (if he did indeed overlook the abuse taking place). As we know in scripture, there is severe punishment for those who “cause one of these little ones to stumble” and it makes me so sad that these children will have to deal with the repercussions of the sin committed against them for many, many years. Perhaps the guilty adults will repent, but I am thankful that God is not only loving, but also just. I pray there is justice served in this sutuation, and that it will be a wake-up call to those who may be able to prevent this from happening again in the future, or who may be tempted to overlook something on account of the “greatness” or talent of another.

  2. Anna, thanks so much for your comment and your food for thought. I’m glad you made the point about repentance, and I hope that there is true repentance in the hearts of all involved. I especially appreciated your comment that this is a wake-up call to prevent similar situations from ever happening and I desperately hope it is. After some thought today, I edited a few words in the post to clarify where I was coming from. Hopefully it didn’t sound like I was sad about the coaches being fired (I agree with that). What saddens me is how these innocent children have been so wounded, and that the coach/coaches lives were in such dark places that they could ever come to do/overlook these things. The “As We Forgive” piece gives me hope in such dark and painful situations as this one.

    1. Thanks for your follow- up post. Yes, I too am glad the story doesn’t have to end here- and that there is always hope and the potential for healing and change with the God we serve…

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