I'm sure you've heard the news today coming out of Cambridge and Watertown, MA. I was shocked to pop onto Facebook this morning and see so many posts about MIT's campus, a dead police officer, and the bombing suspects wreaking havoc on an area we called home for many years.
What caught my attention the most was the age of the suspect on the run. Nineteen.
19 years old.
Does that seem crazy young to anyone else?
At the moment the word is that this teenager is holed up in a boat on some stranger's property and is surrounded police and various other law enforcement folk.
19 years old.
As I thought about this throughout the day, I found myself wondering about what happens in a person's life to make them willing to participate in crimes like bombings and murder at such a young age. (Okay, obviously, I wonder about this for anyone of any age who murders, but this is what's on my mind today.) Then I thought about my own children and sending them out into the world around nineteen years of age and the deep responsibility we have to sow righteousness in their lives, to be careful how I speak to them (tone and content), to teach them to hate what is evil and cling to what is good. Romans 12:9b
I was interrupted by the grace of a personal history that is so full of joy, kindness, love, and hope. I am extra thankful for that today.
I've just heard that this young man is alive and in custody. Lord, have mercy; he's only 19 years old.*
*For the record, I don't believe his age should get him off the hook in any way if he is found guilty. This is simply a reflection on his youth and how it startled me today. What happened at the marathon and in the last 24 hours, all the death and injury is evil and wrong and so, so, so sad and awful. Just want to make sure you don't misinterpret this post!