We Have To Do Something – NOW!

Early last week, I heard a news story that I just can’t shake.  Two men sort of cut each other off when merging lanes on a highway, and one went ballistic.  The first guy opened fire and killed the second guy’s four year old daughter.  Just got mad and boom, a child is dead.  All this over traffic.

I simply don’t understand.  I wonder if this murderer has ever experienced grief.  I simply can’t believe that if he has felt what I have felt he would do anything that could intentionally take a life.  How could you purposefully want to make someone feel the way I have felt?

My heart is also heavy for the families I see floating on overcrowded, flimsy rafts across the Mediterranean Sea.  How fortunate we are here in America.  Well, unless you happen to cut the wrong person off on I-95.

I watch the stories on ABC, and I see the faces, and I ache for them, until the newscast is over.  Then, I go meet a friend for an overpriced dinner out.

What in the hell is going on?  How can I eat Chinese takeout while checking Facebook when there are so many people in the world who are hurting the way I did several years ago?  How can I think about excessively celebrating Christmas when there are folks all around, even in my hometown, who don’t have the money to pay their rent?  How can I toss out half a sandwich because I filled up on a sleeve of sour cream and onion Pringles when 3.5 million children die each year because they DON’T HAVE ENOUGH FOOD TO EAT?

And each of those 3.5 million has a face, a name, an individual personality.  Each one has a mother and a father who misses them dearly.  Each is someone’s Lisa.

Day after day after day someone in my community dies needlessly – from a gunshot or a drunk driver or domestic abuse, and I just don’t know what to do about it.  Everyday thousands of people, thousands, die in places like Syria.

We have to do something.  We have to do something now.

Leave a comment


  1. Maffitt

     /  November 4, 2015

    I share your feelings all the time. If you figure out what to do, please write about it. You have a stage from which to speak out. Keep at it!! Great job!

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. I agree. But the big question is; what can people like us do? I always say “If I hit the lottery, I would do this and this and this for the homeless people in Raleigh.” …. build a hotel for the homeless with amenities of counseling and rehab … but the problems of the world are so huge and there just aren’t enough people that care about someone other than their lives and what is going on in their direct circle. It’s very frustrating.

  3. I couldn’t have said it better myself. Acknowledging the need for a change is the hardest step. From here on, it’s all easy. We can do something, perhaps not on a global scale like we would want to – but just help one person. My religion warrants me to check up on 7 houses to my left, right, front and back every day to make sure my neighbors have enough to eat and sustain. I love this rule; if all of us abided to it, so much would be saved. Rest assured, so many of us do follow this ideology. This is why the world still spins my friend.

    May I take the liberty of making a suggestion (or two)? When you get a chance read The End of Your Life Book Club by Will Shwalbe. You’ll love it. Its a memoir/ode to his mom who passed of cancer. Mary Anne Schwalbe did allot of humanitarian work as well. Some key takeaways for this book (for me) were to help others tirelessly BUT don’t discount the work that we are doing right now. This could mean raising good children that will do good in the future, it could mean small efforts to help out locally. I know personally, if I haven’t solved world hunger or reached world peace, I feel like my efforts aren’t enough. And this is just not true. I don’t want to spoil with to many details but do read and let me know how you like it.

    Secondly, a way to help. There is a church in Chicago that has around 1000 Syrian refugees about the same ages as DJ/Stephanie/Michelle. Perhaps you’ll find happiness in helping them out however you can.


  4. bethbswartz

     /  November 4, 2015

    I TOTALLY agree and have been thinking along the same lines especially lately! As I watch the news and read the paper- I feel like the wealthy are getting wealthier while there is a substantial number of people in extreme poverty! I agree with the 1st comment- you have a great stage to speak out! Maybe working together- we can all do something no matter how small to make this world a better place. Thanks for sharing your wonderful insights!!!

  5. Jo Nance

     /  November 4, 2015

    I agree. Voter education is certainly important. Voting is imperative. We live in a broken world that only God can fix. Pray for ourselves & each other.

  6. Lynne Eggers

     /  November 4, 2015

    You hit a true nerve with this piece…I couldn’t have expressed my own thoughts any better. Where do we begin? I’m in!

    • Danny Tanner

       /  November 7, 2015

      I don’t know – I guess as others have written, do something, anything, help someone.

  7. lynnjoan

     /  November 4, 2015

    You hit a sore spot here…all of us who read your blog probably feel just like you do. I feel extremely frustrated at times too…BUT I am convinced that we can help with the pain and problems in the world, the way we do anything, one small act at a time…. help out at a homeless shelter, feed the homeless, help at a food kitchen, contribute to ministries such as Samaritan’s Purse (find them on-line, they are helping the Syrian refugees). But I know I’m “preaching to the choir.”

  8. koolaidmoms

     /  November 4, 2015

    It means us all doing our little piece. Maybe we can’t all do a grand gesture but little pieces put together make a grand gesture. There is a story of a coach in the next town over making a huge difference. He’s coaching football but he could help coordinate the services the kids need and it goes out from there. http://mmqb.si.com/mmqb/2015/11/02/elliot-uzelac-benton-harbor-high-school-michigan-high-school-football-playoffs It’s a good story about one man. If we could all just do something things would move forward.

  9. You are doing something now. You are bringing up your girls to be great people. There is more you can do but you can’t do it all. The world didn’t get in a mess overnight and it won’t get fixed that way either.

  10. That’s so sad about the little girl 😦 Maybe one day there’ll be sensible gun laws. In the meantime, I’m glad there are other people who want to change things 🙂

  11. Aunt Susan

     /  November 4, 2015

    and now you know why I give all of you Heifer Project gifts. They feed, educate, employ, and empower some of those people. Maybe I need to send you the magazine!
    If any of your readers are interested they should look them up.

  12. Who am I but a single drop in a vast ocean? But together we are that ocean.

    Who am I but a tiny ripple? But together we are a tidal wave.

    Who am I but one person? But if, one day, we were not?

    These are the thoughts that I think. And I wonder where my place will be. I read this last week,


    and I thought, “I cannot do everything, but I can do something.” And I united with a great many somethings, and the world was a little bit better than it had been before.

    And I ask myself each day, “What will my something be today?

  13. Lissa

     /  November 5, 2015

    Thank you for this heartfelt post. I have no answers at all despite years of working in the inner city. But it’s comforting to know others feel the same helpless angst at times.

  14. We can begin with prayer..The problems of this world are too large for one person to tackle.. We must pray for Gods help and to show us what we can do. Blessed Mother Teresa always said and it’s true, “if you can’t feed one hundred then feed just one”… Until people turn from evil and begin to care an love one another as the Lord tells us the reality is things will only get worse but we , whatever station in life we are in can make a difference even if it’s just in one persons life because you may be the only one that one person will ever have…

  15. Andee

     /  November 6, 2015

    This lament reminds me of the Bible book Habakkuk. The Lord answers for an appointed time. What can we do this day? We can repent, turn to God, study God’s Word, and PRAY!!! We can remind God’s promises, remain in the true vine (John 15) bearing good fruit for His glory! Our problem is SIN, individual and corporate, consequences of free will, and spiritual warfare. Our HOPE for reconciliation to a Holy God is Jesus Christ, The Savior. So, put on your spiritual armor (Ephesians 6) and do all you can to stand. Remember, this earthly life is not all there is! We can LOVE, which covers a multitude of sins. As Jesus commanded, love the Lord first, then others as yourself (Matthew 22:37-40).

    (You might also be encouraged by seeing the movie “War Room” and reading a book by John Rosemond called, “Parenting by THE Book.”)



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