Shepherds and Sheepdogs

I mentioned in my Sermon last Sunday that several of us attended a Sheepdog Seminar in Peoria. The seminar took a hard look at the violence that is not only in our society, but that is invading our churches as well. It explored ways that we should prepare for the possibility of armed aggression from without, and the need to protect our children from predators that often come from within.

Our shepherds and sheepdogs will be giving serious consideration to action that should be taken to keep us all safe in the near future, but for now you shouldn’t be shocked to find doors locked more than usual. We recently started locking the front doors after the service begins, and will probably begin locking even the side entrance doors after the offering has been taken. Doors will also be kept locked during the week.

The main presenter for the afternoon sessions was Lt. Colonel Dave Grossman. Not only does he instruct military and law enforcement agencies on how to handle violence, he has also written books on the relationship between violent video games and the explosion of violence in our schools and homes. We showed one of his videos nearly twenty years ago that called our attention to this problem, but now I have his latest book on the topic, Assassination Generation.

The connection between violence in the media, violent video games, and violent behavior is indisputable. Col. Grossman concludes his book by stating: “Early childhood exposure to cartoons and media violence lays a foundation for bullying and violent behavior at a young age. This, in turn, sets the stage for a society where children and adolescents immerse themselves in addictive video games that teach them how to kill, attack, and bully. In this way, media violence is a progressive problem. What starts with cartoons, movies, and television shows in the early years slides into violent video games in adolescence, causing children to sink deeper and deeper into the psychological and biological conditions that I’ve explored in these pages.”

If you aren’t controlling what your kids are watching and playing, you need to read this book.

God Bless, Rick

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