Praying Across the Americas
“The report went on to say, ‘his severe and deteriorating internalized mental health problems… combined with atypical preoccupation with violence… access to deadly weapons…. Provided a recipe for mass murder.’”
And, so, Adam Lanza went down in US history as the perpetrator of the deadliest mass shooting at either a grade school or high school and the fourth deadliest mass shooting by a single person in U.S. history.
The event at Sandy Hook caught the attention of South East Asia Prayer Center for several reasons beyond the shock and trauma of so many children struck down in the seeming safety of their school building. Several of our staff have elementary and preschool children and the faces of anguish struck deep into our hearts. December 14, 2012 will always be remembered as the day we decided that as a prayer ministry we should equip churches and parents with solid answers to the questions of what could have happened to fill the heart of a 20-year-old in a quiet and peaceful community to commit such a heinous act. And how we can prevent such things from occurring.
Ephesians 6:12 gives us some of the answers. Therein are listed four forces that work in a “tag team” relationship determined to eliminate the image of God from the earth. Man, created in the image of God, becomes the target of their campaign. The Greek words and a simple definition disclose how this young man became so filled with hate that he would kill his mother, children, and then himself.
Archas is the first question, and asks “who has preeminence?” Who has control? Who has power? As a sufferer of Asperger’s, Adam was on the outside. He never fit in a group. He had poor social skills and was a social pariah.
Exousias is the second term and it is the “right to speak.” Adam had no voice, or felt that he had none. He just never fit in.
Kosmokratos is the third force, and plays to the question, “Who will rule?” Those on the Autism spectrum as was Adam will constantly struggle with this question. Acting out in a violent manner allows a moment of control.
Pneumatika tae Poneerias, the fourth force, is the Greek for Spirits of Malice (the desire or action that harms another human being). The question was asked if Adam planned his attack and the answer was indeed there was malice aforethought. What filled his mind and heart? This spirit.
At SEAPC we are deeply involved in training people to work with children who have Autism. We also believe that prayer changes people and further that the church is here to restrain these forces from harming humanity. 2 Thessalonians 2:7 teaches us that the mystery of lawlessness is already at work, but the one who now restrains it will continue until he is taken out of the way. The Holy Spirit works through the church to restrain the evil.
The Adam Lanzas of this world need to be embraced by a loving local church. They need the strong example of men who walk with integrity and pray with power.
With this in mind we set June 15 through July 25 as Pray Americas and have mobilized local churches and prayer teams to walk the campuses of their schools and build a prayer wall against these forces. Are all children with Asperger’s or another spectrum illness potential mass-killers? No, most definitely not. But ALL need to be embraced, not shunned; encouraged, not condemned. Loved with attention and lots of hugs. They are vulnerable in a society that worships the great and discards those perceived to be weaker.
We have traveled every State of the US, Canada, and Mexico. We continue to reach out to churches and prayer groups. Our training materials on how to walk and pray in your neighborhood and schools are available. Together we can make this year the year of breakthrough. We can take action. For practical guide on malice prevention, please contact SEAPC. We are ready to stand with you for America.