Educating My Flock of Sheep

Do you know the story about sheep, wolves and sheepdogs?

The Sunday morning after the Colorado theater shooting, I had the rare opportunity of enjoying a day off which fell on a Sunday. A ritual of mine is to attend church with my family. I was eager to attend this day as a woman priest who is a friend of mine was preaching for our vacationing clergy.

Chris was telling the story of the sheep, shepherds and sheepdogs. She was reminding us of the role of a sheepdog to guide the herd of sheep and how we all have a responsibility to look out for each other. There was no mention of the current events in her sermon.

At the time of peace, Chris came over to me to hug me. She whispered in my ear that it is nice to hug you without the guns in your hands. The previous Wednesday, I ran into Chris behind my police station as I was assisting our mechanic remove a shotgun and a patrol rifle from a disabled cruiser to be secured inside the station. It’s all about timing in life and unfortunately Chris and I did not get a change for a friendly hug that day. One could say my hands were full at that moment.

After the service, I had coffee with several friends including Chris. Everyone wants to know in a kind but awkward way what’s going on in our community. They want to hear that life is Utopia and sometimes I have to adjust my comments to minimize the shock and awe factor. Calling it “sugar coating” the truth or allowing my friends to enjoy their peaceful existence in their own world, I have to edit the reality of police work to my audience. Some people want the raw and powerful truth that is the reality of police work, and others want to feel safe believing in their minds that the world is safe.

Chris and I had a moment to share on her sermon and I brought to her attention the story by Lt. Col. David Grossman on the role of… Continue reading