Letter to the Editor

The devil doesn't sleep, so why should we?

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

To the editor:

I have been thinking for a couple of days now about the words I want to say. The words that people need to hear. I've prayed for guidance in writing this.

The only words that come to mind are: The violence has to stop.

Regardless of race, religion, political background, ethnicity ... whatever or whoever you are, just know that violence is not the answer.

The population of Blytheville, according to the last Census, is 15,447, yet Blytheville has one of the highest crime rates in the state of Arkansas. For every 1,000 people, 13.14 crimes are committed. That means you have a 1 out of 76 chance of being a victim of a crime at any given time. 31.10 percent percent of Blytheville lives below the national poverty line. An average of 203 violent crimes are committed a year and 1,491 property crimes are committed per year. All this happens in a town of 15,447.

Is anyone else floored by these statistics? Too many children in our county are growing up without parents because of crime.

Jesus spoke these words in Matthew 5: "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot. You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven."

I read these words that Jesus spoke so many years ago and I ask myself, where are the Christians? I am speaking to myself as well. Jesus spoke of love so many times in the Bible. Christians, we can't hide out in our churches. Our city needs us and especially needs to see Jesus in us. Stand up. Be bold. Show others the love of Christ.

We can't just sit around and complain about the state of our city. Complaining does nothing. Be active in your community. There are plenty of opportunities to make a difference in someone's life. The devil doesn't sleep so why should we? Satan has people working for him 24 hours a day and we should prove that God does too.

It's easy to sit around and complain, blame the police or blame a person just because they're a different color. Don't be that person. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. once said, "The time is always right to do what is right." Those are words every citizen of our town can and should live by. Together, with prayer and some work, we can make Blytheville and the world around us a better place.

My final thought comes from 2nd Chronicles 7:14: "If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land."

William M. King, III