What can I offer that hasn't already been said? My heart is heavy and filled with grief for the children lost, for their parents, for the teachers who gave their lives, for the kids who survived and witnessed things they should never have seen, for the community and its loss, for the police officers on the scene, and on and on and on.
Friday morning I got a text from a friend about what was going on and looked briefly at a news report online. I was getting ready to run errands alone for the morning. I gathered my things and got into the car. I debated about turning on the news, but I had to know. As I heard the details, I wept. Wept and wept as I drove to the post office. Wept on the way to Target. I wanted to drive straight to Lute's school and pull him out of class and hold him tight all day long. I thought long and hard about those mothers and fathers and grandparents and brothers and sisters who had little girls and boys, the same age as my boy, gone forever. It is an unfathomable tragedy that no one should have to endure. Ever.
I've felt guilt over the last several days. Guilt over my good fortune, guilt even for feeling so deeply sad. After all, I haven't lost anyone. My children are safe and happy and full of life.
But I think it's okay. Good, even, to feel the grief. It draws me to prayer for the families. Prayers for those who are now in a crisis of faith, for those whose eyes have been turned away from the good and beauty and miracle of this season.
God is still good. He didn't do this: we are humans created with choice, with free will. And some choose evil. The world is filled with terrible tragedies, and violence and hate. And thank God it's not our home. Thank God we have the hope of Heaven, with freedom from pain and sadness and horror. But right now we're here. With all the bad in the world, there is even more good. Let us be the good. God has promised us a peace that passes all understanding, and that is my prayer for the families that are dealing with the worst possible tragedy and pain.
That love would abound in their hearts, hope would prevail, peace would reign.
Read their stories. Pray for them.
I had scheduled my Share the Love link up for tomorrow, but I am postponing it until Friday.
I am joining with other bloggers in a day of silence in memory of the lives lost at Sandy Hook Elementary. If you'd like to join me, I'll also be emailing some written prayers to an amazing lady who is compiling them and sending them to a church in Newtown to share with the families. You can reach her at kathy.rohrs at gmail dot com.
I read this prayer of St. Francis today, and it felt timely.
- Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
- Where there is hatred, let me sow love.
- Where there is injury, pardon.
- Where there is doubt, faith.
- Where there is despair, hope.
- Where there is darkness, light.
- Where there is sadness, joy.
- O Divine Master,
- grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console;
- to be understood, as to understand;
- to be loved, as to love.
- For it is in giving that we receive.
- It is in pardoning that we are pardoned,
- and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life.
Hold your kids tight, tell people you love them, pray for the hurting.