Lost of Innocence

Last week was a tough one, not only for me but for the whole nation. Thursday night I received a phone call from a very close friend in tears. Her nephew had just committed suicide. I obviously jumped in the car to provide my support. Then the next morning, while I’m trying to shake the emotions from that event, I walked into the break room of my job and saw on the television the news from Connecticut.

I could relate not only at the human level, but at the personal level of the pain and confusion that others were feeling. I could understand how parents felt about answering questions to confused children about the events they witnessed or were made aware of, because the night before I was approached by my friend’s young children with similar questions.
Our children should not have to worry about why someone decides to take their life or someone else’s. Our children should not need to understand the pain of losing a teacher, a brother, a father, a mother or a friend; especially under these horrible circumstances.

We are all looking for a silver lining within the grief. I’ve come to the conclusion that hopelessness is part of the pain of those who commit these acts. They feel like there’s no way to end their pain than to leave this earth and/or hurt others. This has motivated me to continue to do what God has called me to do, to write more and more about the good news of redemption and hope. That there’s always a way out and a solution that doesn’t include more pain.

This has also been a wake up call for me and for so many others of how our lives can change in an instant unexpectedly. It has reminded me to express my gratitude, my appreciation and my love to those around me before it’s too late.
I know the recent events have not only made the children aware of an evil world. It has even place awareness of concern in adults as well. Where are we safe? Thinking as far back as Columbine, I can recall a movie theater, a college campus, several churches, a gym, a mall, several workplaces and now an elementary school, and that’s just off the top of my head. But let’s stand on the Word of God that tells us:

  • Zechariah 2:5 :And I myself will be a wall of fire around it,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will be its glory within.’”
  • Psalm 34:7 “The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.”
  • Psalm 91:2 “I will say [a] of the LORD, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
  • Psalm 91:4-5 “He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day,”

I ask you today to pray for my friend’s nephew who left behind a wife and two small children. Also pray for all the victims in Connecticut; for those parents, siblings, for the whole community. But also remember to pray for the family of the perpetrator. He left behind a father who lost a son, and a young man who lost his brother and mother. Let’s also pray that God gives our authorities the wisdom to do what needs to be done to avoid these things, whatever that may be.

Hug each other a little tighter today. I appreciate all of you. Be safe. Be blessed.

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Reflections on Arizona Tragedy

Christina Green 9yr old who died in Tucson Arizona. Ironically born on 9/11/01

Sometimes it takes a tragic event for us to evaluate the life that we live. We live in the hustle and bustle of our routine and allow ourselves to let real life drift out of our hands. Life is such a gift, and we forget to appreciate it.

Today in Arizona, a young man is suspected to have shot nineteen people. It became quick news because there were renowned people amongst them. At this time six of those lives have ended. A simple trip to the supermarket, a town hall meeting to talk to a congress woman, a walk down the street to salute a friend were the intentions of some of those attendants to that strip mall who never suspected to be involved in such a tragedy and how their lives would change or end in the blink of an eye.

Nobody knows the day or the hour. We all know when our life began; we don’t know when it will end. What do we want our lives to reflect when we leave this temporal place to our eternal place? I heard someone say, we’re all going to achieve eternal life after this life, but where are we going to spend that eternal life is the individual question that we need to ask ourselves.

An event like this reminds us of so many things. How many other lives have ended or been affected due to hatred, unforgiveness, and rage? As I watch the news, I hear those that we have trusted our safety keep saying how they don’t know what to do. Isn’t that comforting?

Gabrielle Giffords and husband on her wedding day in 2007

As a nation we keep forgetting that we were one under God, and as the generations have gone by, we’ve tried to remove God from our lives. Has anyone seen the parallel of removing God and his principles and how worse our quality of life has gotten?
I think it’s time for us to remember every day, every moment who we belong to and not get distracted by the wretchedness of this world.

Let’s start by praying for those who perished in Tucson, Arizona and for those who are still struggling for their lives. Let’s keep in prayers for the families affected by this terrible tragedy including the family of the shooter, who is also having a hard day today. Let’s then look at our lives and see what we need to change to make ours a fruitful life and a happier life. Who do we need to reconcile with? Who needs out ear, out attention and our love? ; So that when our day comes…either tomorrow or in fifty years we can hear our Lord Say, “well done, good and faithful servant”.