I haven’t written in this blog all week because I don’t know what to say. Many of my blogger friends have gone on, business as usual, writing their normal commentary. Avoiding the one topic preeminent in everyone’s thoughts.
But I can’t. Because this week is anything but usual.
When I think I need to say something profound, I freeze. I can’t find words that will comfort, that will make sense of the senseless. There aren’t any. Not today. Not this week.
Violence – planned and carried out intentionally by someone bent on destruction – rocked our world on Monday at the Boston Marathon. Wednesday night, disaster near Waco, Texas claimed even more lives. (Can the date and location be mere coincidence?)
How are we supposed to go about our days with heavy hearts and minds imprinted with images of horror?
A friend of mine reminded me of something Fred Rogers (you know him as Mister Rogers) once said: “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, ‘Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’ To this day, especially in times of disaster, I remember my mother’s words and I am always comforted by realizing that there are still so many helpers – so many caring people in this world.”
And so I search for hope.
And hope comes. Stories of heroes emerge. A father thanks people for their prayers – after his young son is killed and his wife and daughter seriously injured. Sports fans belt out the Star-Spangled Banner through their tears at the Boston Bruins game. Another rips the shirt off his back to bind a wound. Still others run against the tide, into harm’s way, to hold victim’s hands and tell them they’ll be OK.
One story that gave me hope this week took place half a world away. It’s a story that could only have been scripted and directed by my God.
A twelve-year old girl in Ethiopia, abducted and beaten by several men, was found in the countryside, guarded by three lions. The lions chased off her captors and rescued her from almost certain rape. When help arrived, Aslan and his friends left her and calmly walked off.
Is it any coincidence that Jesus is called the Lion of Judah? He is the Mighty King who rescues us, and he’s a king who cares.
“The Lord your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.” (Zeph. 3:17)
And one day, I firmly believe that He will make everything right. I don’t have answers. No profound insight. Just hope that there’s more to it than this life. Hope that what we see now is only the first chapter; the story will change course and it will have a happy ending.
Lord, come quickly. And have mercy on us.