BREAKING NEWS: Five people shot in Louisiana incident, Christian Influence is Waning, Unraveling of America Goes on…and on…..Two states, Two deadly mass shootings

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BREAKING NEWS:

Five people shot in Louisiana incident

usatoday.com
Daily Briefing
MONDAY, APRIL 19
The Austin-Travis County EMS, which responded to the scene, described an an "active attack/shooter incident."
Two states. Two deadly mass shootings.
Shootings in Texas and Wisconsin leave six dead, jurors hear closing arguments in the Chauvin trial and more news to start your Monday.
Good morning, Daily Briefing readers. At least six people are dead in mass shootings in Texas and Wisconsin – and one of the suspected attackers remains at large. The prosecution and defense in the murder trial of Derek Chauvin, the former police officer charged in George Floyd’s death, are expected to present their closing arguments. And, in more uplifting news, NASA is hoping it’ll be second time lucky for the Mars Ingenuity helicopter as it attempts to make the first powered flight on another planet.
It’s Jane, with Monday’s news.
But first, here’s what people are reading right now:
🎤 ‘American Idol’ judge Katy Perry comforted a sobbing singer who forgot their lyrics: ‘Perfection is an illusion.’
Mark and Donnie Wahlberg are mourning the death of their mother, Alma Wahlberg, who appeared on their family reality show “Wahlburgers.” She was 78.
Sunday Burquest, the inspirational youth pastor contestant on 2016’s “Survivor: Millenials vs. Gen X,” died Sunday after a battle with esophageal and ovarian cancer. She was 50.
🎧 On today’s 5 Things podcast, listen for the latest from mass shootings in Wisconsin and Texas. You can listen to the podcast every day on Apple PodcastsSpotify, or on your smart speaker.
New this morning: ‘How much worse does it get?’: Trauma from the Capitol riot and car attack is taking a toll on Hill staffers
🏆 Did you catch the ACM Awards? Read on for our six top moments from the show. 
Here’s what’s happening today:

Shootings in Texas and Wisconsin leave several dead

Mass shootings in Austin, Texas and Kenosha County, Wisconsin , this weekend left several people dead. In Texas’ capital city, authorities continue to search for a former sheriff’s deputy suspected of fatally shooting three people. Police are pursuing Stephen Nicholas Broderick, 41, and consider him armed and dangerous. Officers said the shooting appeared to stem from a domestic situation and preliminary information indicated that Broderick knew the victims. Meanwhile, in Wisconsin, authorities arrested a “person of interest” in connection with the shooting that left three people dead and at least two more injured at a Kenosha County tavern. The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department said the person in custody will be criminally charged with one count of first-degree intentional homicide with additional criminal charges to follow pending further investigation.
With FedEx shootingsAmerica suffers 6th consecutive week with a mass killing

Derek Chauvin trial: Jurors hear closing arguments in murder case

Attorneys for the prosecution and defense in the murder trial of former Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin, charged in George Floyd’s death, are expected to present their closing arguments Monday. The judge told the jury that they should return to court at 9 a.m. CDT on Monday . What happens next? The judge will instruct the jurors on the laws in the case before the panel members start verdict deliberations. Every trial is different, so accurately predicting the length of jury deliberations is difficult. But legal experts told USA TODAY that Minnesota juries typically have returned verdicts within a few days.
‘We must show up no matter what’: People gather in George Floyd Square ahead of Derek Chauvin trial closing arguments
Prosecution in Derek Chauvin murder trial rests its case. Here are the highlights
Here are the jurors in Derek Chauvin’s murder trial

NASA’s Ingenuity helicopter set to attempt first powered flight on Mars

NASA will again attempt to make history Monday with the first flight of the Mars Ingenuity helicopter . After an initial failure on April 9, NASA on Friday rescheduled the first flight to 3:30 a.m. ET on Monday after a second high-speed test of the helicopter’s rotors proved successful. If all goes well, the Mars Perseverance rover will record Ingenuity as it attempts – in a test evoking the Wright brothers at Kitty Hawk in 1903 – the first powered flight on another planet. But it will take three hours for data from the flight to reach Earth: Scientists will be sweating it out until they get the results in a livestream beginning at 6:15 a.m. EDT. Keep an eye on usatoday.com for updates!
NASA and JPL named two sites on Mars after an author and an engineer. Here’s why you should know them, too
NASA’s mission to Mars looks for signs of life

Supreme Court to weigh key immigration case

The Supreme Court on Monday will hear an appeal in a 2015 case that could impact the status of hundreds of thousands of immigrants in the U.S. living in a state of limbo . At issue in the dispute is whether those who received Temporary Protected Status (TPS) are eligible to apply for green cards even if they initially entered the country illegally. Some 400,000 people, most of them from El Salvador, live in the U.S. under the TPS program, which permits foreign nationals to remain if the administration decides conditions in their country prevent them from safely returning. If the justices uphold the decision, TPS recipients would have to leave the country before applying for lawful permanent residency – with no guarantee of being accepted.
Immigration was a scorching topic at the Supreme Court. Not anymore
Biden projected to expand legal immigrationPew analysis shows

All adults in US eligible for COVID-19 vaccine, per Biden deadline

Monday marks President Joe Biden’s deadline for all U.S. adults to become eligible to receive a coronavirus vaccine — two weeks sooner than his original goal of May 1 . However, the White House has made clear that it doesn’t mean all Americans will get the vaccine April 19. “It means they can join the line,” said White House press secretary Jen Psaki. Using federal guidance on priority populations and projections on vaccine shipments, states have been making their own decisions about when residents can get vaccinated. Psaki said the faster timeline is possible because of the increased vaccine supply and distribution points. On Sunday, Dr. Anthony Fauci  said the pause on using the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine will probably be lifted by Friday, although some restrictions may be required.
How the Johnson & Johnson vaccine pause could impact America’s vaccine rollout
In this city plagued by poverty and addiction, the pandemic isn’t going anywhere

ICYMI: Some of our top stories from Sunday

Police in Minnesota round up journalists covering protest, force them on the ground and take pictures of their faces 
As protests continue over police killings, lawmakers try to add to the list of crimes protesters could face 
World War II-era plane makes emergency landing in surf off of Florida beach
Biden’s Supreme Court commission already facing resistance as it considers wide range of ‘reforms’ 
Prince Philip laid to rest in Royal Vault but it’s not his final destination. Here’s why

Man runs from Disneyland to Walt Disney World: How to turn our discouragement into God’s transforming strength

Today is April 19, 2021 | Read time: 6 minutes | Read online

 © Giorgio Pulcini/stock.adobe.com

Don Muchow recently ran from Disneyland in Southern California to Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida—a trip of more than two thousand five hundred miles. He completed his cross-country trek to bring awareness to Type 1 diabetes, a disease with which he has been living since 1972.

Eight years ago, Heather Abbott was standing near the finish line at the Boston Marathon when two bombs exploded. Four days later, her left leg was amputated below the knee. She received a prosthesis for walking, but insurance would not cover additional prostheses for other activities. When she learned of this problem, she created the Heather Abbott Foundation, which has now raised more than $1 million and helped provide customized prosthetic devices to more than forty-two amputees across the US.

Queen Elizabeth II has announced that she will allow self-guided tours of the historic Buckingham Palace gardens for the first time in the palace’s history. Members of the public will be able to enjoy meadows “carpeted with primroses and bluebells . . . flowering camellia, magnolia and azalea shrubs and trees,” according to the press release.

A paradoxical point of redemption

There is good news to celebrate, but there is bad news to grieve as well.

Three people were shot and killed in Austin, Texas, yesterday. Three other people died in a shooting early yesterday morning in Wisconsin.

The global COVID-19 death toll passed three million on Saturday as cases surge worldwide. A couple was preparing to celebrate their fiftieth wedding anniversary when the husband was killed in the FedEx mass shooting last Thursday. And a grieving pastor and his wife are asking the public to help police catch whoever killed their daughter in a Birmingham, Alabama, park on Easter Sunday.

Both sides of the news provoke discouragement in me. I cannot run continents, raise millions of dollars for amputees, or offer historic gardens to the public. I cannot stop the pandemic, prevent shootings, or solve the murder in Birmingham.

Here’s the paradoxical point I would like us to consider today: God wants to redeem such discouragement for his highest glory and our greatest good.

This ministry exists to help people respond biblically and redemptively to our fallen culture. But such responses can feel like an exercise in frustration and futility. The moral trajectory of our society is clearly downward; our political divisions are deepening; street violence is threatening; Christian influence seems to be waning.

But when we recognize our inability to make a transforming difference in our broken world, that’s when we can be used by the One who can.

“When I am weak, then I am strong”

Today’s Daily Article was sparked by Br. Todd Blackham’s recent devotional for the Society of St. John the Evangelist in Boston: “The paradox, the crux of our faith, is God’s power being made perfect in weakness. When we can face the sober reality of our helplessness, our powerlessness over sin and separation from the source of life, that’s when Jesus can step in to lift us up.”

When Paul asked the Lord to remove his “thorn in the flesh,” God refused and instead told his apostle, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9a). Paul responded, “Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me” (v. 9b). He had learned the source of transforming strength: “When I am weak, then I am strong” (v. 10).

I believe the greatest challenge we face in engaging our fallen culture lies not in the culture but in ourselves. All that Jesus has ever done, he can still do. All of God there is, is in this moment. But he can do through us only what we allow him to do in us.

Self-reliance constricts the Holy Spirit. He can use fully those who depend fully on him. His best for us is far better than our best for ourselves.

Why God gives us discernment

History turns on tiny hinges formed by sacrificial service.

The Battles of Lexington and Concord took place on this day in 1775. Eight Americans were killed at the Battle of Lexington: John Brown, Samuel Hadley, Caleb Harrington, Jonathan Harrington, Robert Munroe, Isaac Muzzey, Asahel Porter, and Jonas Parker. They died never knowing that their sacrifice would spark the American Revolution and change history.

The next time you encounter something in the news that discourages you, embrace that feeling. Don’t turn off the news or turn away in despair. Instead, name the hopelessness you feel and the inadequacy it incites in your spirit.

Now turn your weakness into a request for God’s strength. Ask him to give you words to pray and say, steps to take, compassion to offer.

Oswald Chambers reminded us that “God never gives us discernment so that we may criticize, but that we may intercede.” When we choose to pray and serve despite all opposition and discouragement, we experience the power of God in ways that will change our lives and our culture.

One of my great privileges as a pastor in Dallas was to develop very close friendships with two other pastors in our community. I was eating lunch with them one day when we began discussing the persecuted church around the world and the joy that believers experience when they suffer for Jesus.

One of my friends made this profound point: “When Christianity is easy, it is hard. When Christianity is hard, it is easy.”

Which is true for you today?

NOTE: My wife and I are taking the next several days to celebrate our fortieth wedding anniversary. In my absence, our oldest son, Ryan Denison, will write the Daily Article. Ryan is Senior Fellow for Theology at Denison Forum. He is completing his PhD in church history after receiving the Master of Divinity from Truett Seminary and a degree in religion from Baylor University. He and his wife live in East Texas and have two children. It is a wonderful privilege to share this ministry with him.

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Dr. Jim Denison is the CVO of Denison Forum

Through The Daily Article email newsletter and podcast, DenisonForum.org, social media, interviews, and articles across the internet, Denison Forum reaches 2.2 million culture-changing Christians every month.

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