At some point in our lives we have, ” close calls”, when we know or don’t know until later; that the decisions we made, or something we did affected the entire outcome of a situation, or life.
Crystal got to experience this; in a major way.
As you read her story, think of your own life; have you lived it in the way that brings glory to God, or do you think you could change somethings.
And if you were placed in her situation, would you have made it out alive?
Think about it.
When Crystal got to school one morning, she thought it would be any typical day.
She had a big test to study for, that seemed to slip her mind over the weekend, and planned on getting together with some friends in the library instead of taking an off campus lunch.
The Biology test was the only thing on her mind. So far.
As a child, Crystal was pretty involved and church and the youth group, but as she got older, her heart slipped away from God, and fell into the party scene.
Peer-pressure took its toll.
She realized she had a growing void in her life and returned back to the church, but still struggled with her, ” double life”.
She sat there at the table with her friend Seth and Sara, and they giggled and joked playing with her new camera, as the librarian watched from the otherside of the room.
Pictures of Prom from the weekend before, and so many memories…
They always had such a blast together.
Suddenly, something from outside the door of the library got their attention.
Strange sounds, and footsteps.
At first they thought it was just some kids walking the halls instead of going to class.
But then they also heard screams, and yelling.
Crystal and her friends stared at each other in fear. Something was wrong.
Just then a teacher ran into the library,
” There are boys outside with guns and bombs. They’re shooting students!”
At first through their fear they tried to find humor. No not here. It has to be a prank.
Something dumb like that.
People don’t get shot here.
The school they attended was Columbine High School, in Littleton, Colorado.
I had a chance to visit there a few years ago.
The supermarkets had their doors wide open, and kids were happily playing in the streets.
How could something like that have happened here, I asked myself a thousand times, as I walked through the hallways.
Crystal and her friends realized how real it was, when a student came into the library falling to the ground clutching his bleeding shoulder.
The sounds were very close. There was no time to escape.
Crystal, Sara, and Seth dived under the table, the only place in the room that they could hide.
Seth pulled Crystal into his chest,
” Start praying, I don’t know what’s happening, only God can get us through.”
Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold entered the library; and began randomly shooting students.
Crystal couldn’t see anything, because her head was buried deep in Seth’s shirt.
She kept praying, through every scream, gun shot, and explosion of the bombs around her.
The voices became closer.
She just thought to herself, ” Its my time to die.”
She heard a gunshot a few feet away. A boy was shot because he wore glasses.
Crystal prayed harder than she ever prayed in her life,
” Okay God, if you’re real, get me out of here alive, I will give You my life forever. I’ll quit partying. I will do anything. Just get me out of here. I didn’t understand then. I do now. It all makes sense to me now.”
A library flew underneath the table and hit her arm. Her table was next.
Something inside of her spoke clear and bold,
” God’s going to get you out. You have a story to tell. God’s going to get you out.”
Just then, as Crystal sat there digging her nails into Seth. The shooters spoke aloud that they had run out of ammunition; and had to go back into the hallway to reload.
As soon as they left the room, all teh surviving students jumped up and ran to the fire escape.
She knew it was time to move. She opened her eyes to see the horror for the first time.
” It was the first time I had seen the room, Everything had been shot up- the computers, the windows the books- little fires had been started from the pipe bombs. I saw the bodies of my classmates on the floor…and I knew they were dead.”
Once they got out of the room, they ran to the cop car, and hid behind it.
The police officers brought them further as soon as it was safe enough to do so.
” Everything I had known for sixteen years- my innocence, my security, my safety–was stripped away from me. I didn’t know what I had just seen. I hadn’t processed it all.”
It would be hours before they would know who was alive and who wasn’t.
Crystal walked around with Craig Scott as he looked for his sister Rachel. He hadn’t heard from her, and her car was still outside the school.
They would later find out she was the first person to be murdered in the school.
She had died professing her faith in Jesus. They asked her if she believed in God, and her answer was clear, ” You know that I do.”
Another student by the name of Cassie Bernall, who had just become a Christian, was shot in another part of the library.
Crystal would never forget the promise she made to God that day.
She became a member unofficially for Columbine students. She spoke out, challenging students to live for God no matter what could happen.
A living testimony to the verse, ” My grace is sufficient for you, my power is made perfect in weakness.” 1 Corinthians 12:9.
Crystal is now married, and continues to share her story to help others be encouraged from something meant to be nothing but a tragedy.
She knew, that God had saved her life.
There is always something stronger in this life than the chaos in the world.
We just have to stop, and believe in HIM!
” I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes Him who sent me has eternal life, and will not be condemned; He has crossed over from death to life.”
1. Do you wake up each morning with the thought that, ” this will be just another typical day”, and just go through it. Or do you wake up making sure you live every moment like it was your last?
2. Do you know anyone whose life has changed because of somekind of tragedy.
What has changed?
3. http://www.rachelschallenge.com/– read her story, and then make a personal choice to follow the legacy that we are all called for, whether we know it or not.