During a time like this, I feel like blogles of my normal tone are pretty insignificant, and anything unrelated to the current tragedy are dishonorable to those affected. Through the coming days, as we get back to some sense of normalcy (hopefully from the result of an arrest of the shooter), the regular blogles will return.
However, I was sent this letter that was sent out to all members of the Auburn Football Lettermen Club, and while it was meant for those who are specifically in the Auburn Football fraternity, I felt we could all benefit from reading it.
To my friends and fellow members of the Auburn Football Lettermen Club:
As most of you are aware, The Auburn University family and the greater Auburn community are suffering through the aftermath of the horrible tragedy that occurred last Saturday evening. The details surrounding the unimaginable events of Saturday night are still being pieced together so we will not attempt to explain or re-tell the story. However, I am writing this AFLC Update with two special requests.
As members of the Auburn football family, we all have a link to the victims. Specifically, We are connected to Ladarious Phillips and Ed Christian (former members of the Auburn University football team) and Eric Mack (a current player). Phillips and Christian were killed during the disturbance and one of their friends, DeMario Pitts, also lost his life. Another friend of the players, John Robertson, is struggling for his life at UAB Hospital. Eric Mack is expected to make a full recovery.
The first request that I am presenting each member of the Auburn Football Lettermen Club is for all of us to pause and give consideration to one of the most meaningful passages from the Holy Bible - Psalms 23:
The Lord is my Shepherd. I shall not want.
He makes me to down green pastures.
He leads me beside waters.
He restores my soul.
He leads me on the path of righteousness for His name sake.
Although I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil.
His rod and His staff comfort me.
He prepares e table for me in the presence of my enemies.
He anoints my head with oil and my cup runs over.
Surely, His goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life.
I will dwell in the House of the Lord, forever and ever. Amen.
The passage reminds us that God is in control of ALL of our circumstances. While none of us is assured of what tomorrow brings, each of us has an opportunity to confidently move forward and make a difference on this day.
Therefore, the second request is for you to join with me and pray for strength and eternally-based hope for the families of these men. Further, would you thank the Lord for the strong and loving leadership that we are observing from Athletic Director Jay Jacobs, Head Coach Gene Chizik, Chaplain Chette Williams and the local Auburn leaders. Finally, as we look around our own cities, towns and counties, please let this tragedy motivate you to pray for young people in your community. Pray that the senseless deaths of these men in Auburn will be an eye-opener that might cause others to pause and consider the consequences before they act.
We are a family of friends and we share a special bond of Auburn football. Thank you for being willing to "stand in the gap" during this time of need for so many.
War Eagle and God bless,