Our hearts are so very heavy today. I don't know a single soul who lives in or around Newtown, Connecticut, but this weekend I grieved as if I did. I cannot remember a single event that hit me in the gut this way... not since 9/11 anyway. I've had to take all of it in small doses, and I realize that I'm lucky that I can do that since I'm far away from it all and can turn on and off the news as I please. My heart breaks for every parent, grandparent, sibling, teacher, and friend of those children, as well as to everyone who will have to cope with the horrors that they have witnessed and experienced. I think we all feel helpless, confused, shocked, and deeply saddened, but there are no words that can make it all go away. I so wish there was.
I debated about whether or not I would even bring up this tragic news on my blog, especially since it seems to be everywhere and that town and those families need some time to just mourn and grieve. But I decided earlier today that I can mention it only to put more love out there, to be one more grieving mother who is sending every bit of love and prayer she has to those families. This morning I finally forced myself to listen to every single child's name and really look at every face, just so I could take a moment and breathe a prayer over every little soul and their loved ones. In times of dispair, it's all I know to do. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results [James 5:16]. Let my prayer be one more lifted up.
Today I encourage you to do the same. While we cannot do much, we can pray for this town and for all people involved. We can pray for our teachers, those who so selflessly protect our children when we cannot be there to do it ourselves. I come from a long line of teachers and can honestly say that I have never been more proud of all of them... I know every single one of them would have done all that they could to protect their class. We can pray for our government and our leaders, those who are trying to find a "why" behind the "what" that could possibly prevent these things from happening again. We can pray for those battling disabilities and illnesses, and the parents and doctors who are trying to navigate the best path for their care. And we can pray for our nation, our communities, and the people in them. I believe that most people are inherently good, and there is still plenty of good in this world. God loved us so much that He allowed us to choose to love Him, with the understanding that by giving us the choice to love, He also leaves room for the choice to hate. So today I'm choosing to love and I'm choosing to pray and I'm choosing to hold my loved ones a little tighter. I know it doesn't seem like much, but maybe if we all chose to do those things everyday, the good in the world would outshine the bad. It's worth a try anyway.
"And I am convinced that nothing can separate us from God's love. Neither death nor life, neither angels or demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow- not even the powers of hell can separate us from God's love. No powers in the sky above or in the earth below- indeed nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus." [Romans 9:38-19]