Barnabas Network International | Online Resources for Churches



by Mike Robinson

Sometimes tragedy can make us look at life with a reality and a wisdom that would otherwise escape us. The following insights are reported to have come from a student at ColumbineHigh School in Colorado USA, scene of the death of 15 people in April, 1999.

"The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings, but shorter tempers; wider freeways, but narrower viewpoints; we spend more, but have less; we buy more, but enjoy it less.

We have bigger houses and smaller families; more conveniences, but less time; we have more degrees, but less sense; more knowledge but less judgment; more experts, but more problems; more medicine, but less wellness. We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values.

We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often. We've learned how to make a living, but not a life; we've added years to life, not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet the new neighbor.

We've conquered outer space, but not inner space; we've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul; we've split the atom, but not our prejudice. We have higher incomes, but lower morals; we've become long on quantity, but short on quality.

These are the times of tall men, and short character; steep profits, and shallow relationships. These are the times of world peace, but domestic warfare; more leisure, but less fun; more kinds of food, but less nutrition.

These are days of two incomes, but more divorce; of fancier houses, but broken homes. It is a time when there is much in the show window and nothing in the stockroom; a time when media technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to make a difference or just ignore it."

The series of contrasts set out above is a tragic reflection of the way life's values have changed. The greater tragedy would be for us to read it, agree with it…then turn the page without any commitment to make a change in our own lives. We can't change the whole world but we can make a difference in our immediate situation.

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