Stop and Think: It Might Save Your Life
1 Corinthians 13:11
All of us were horrified to learn of the tragic suicide of Rutgers University student who had his privacy violated by his dorm mates. The story is sad all around, from the homosexuality of the student to the tragic and malevolent invasion of this young man's personal life.
I'm guessing that the two students who filmed this video and made it public had no intention of seeing their friend jump off a bridge. But their inability to exercise wisdom before they acted resulted in these unintended consequences. Consequences that will reap a lifetime harvest of terrible things.
I'm guessing their parents sent them off to Rutgers with hope, envisioning them building a career, a family, and in some way, making the world a better place. Now, their names will forever be attached to tragedy and evil, they will be symbols of a new era of bad manners, ignorance, and shifting moral character.
All, because they thought they went a little too far. They allowed their embrace of the fun of the moment completely shadow any rational, wise thought.
I imagine they are sitting somewhere, likely with parents and lawyers, wondering what would have happened if they could have taken that one day back. If they had stopped and given some thought to the very stupid idea before them.
There are a lot of lessons for young people from this tragedy. But perhaps the biggest lesson is a simple one. A biblical one. Think before you act. Think before you speak. Think before you do something so colossally dumb it will and could ruin your life.
I'm amazed at the bad manners of many in this generation. I am constantly "unfriending" young people on Facebook because they display way too much information. There is no privacy anymore. Personal, intimate details of people's private lives are up for display. It's too much information and I'm not interested, thank you.
But this isn't a new problem. Young people have always been short on wisdom and long on fun. It's just that now we have more digital ways to display the foolishness.
I can think of many dumb things I did in my high-school college years that seemed fun but only caused heartbreak and hurt relationships. Fortunately I didn't have the means to do something as stupid as these guys at Rutgers.
A wise person once told me, "Son, the sooner you grow up, the better your life will be." Young people hate that advice. But it's true. Maturity isn't fashionable. There are no hot new singles beating to the tune of responsibility.
But I'm guessing that these dudes at Rutgers wishes there were. Because maybe they wouldn't be in so much trouble. And maybe, their classmate would still be alive.
That's something worth stopping and thinking about.
Daniel Darling is an author, pastor, and public speaker. His latest book is Crash Course, Forming a Faith Foundation for Life. Visit him on Facebook by clicking here, follow on him on Twitter at twitter.com/dandarling, or check out his website: danieldarling.com.