Our nation suffered yet another senseless mass murder yesterday, and to top it off it took place on Ash Wednesday when we are tasked with facing our own mortality and need for God. This morning I have been reading scripture and staring at my computer. I’ve been praying, and I’ve been wondering just what to say following yesterday’s events. I’ve been trying to craft together thoughts and words in a way that would help us to frame what took place. But I can’t. I can’t.
My wife is a much deeper theologian than I am. She always seems to have a handle on those things that I miss. I mentioned to her this morning that I was having trouble coming up with something to say and once again she set my perspective back straight. “That’s because violence makes no sense,” she said.
It doesn’t, does it? Violence doesn’t make any sense.
So a few rambling thoughts:
1) It is true that we live in a broken world, but that is not an excuse. It’s so easy for us to brush these things off by saying, “We are a fallen creation.” Or “evil exists.” Those things are all true, but that doesn’t mean we can use them as excuses to simply accept these circumstances as normal.
In his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus tells the crowds: “You are the salt of the earth; but if salt has lost its taste, how can its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything, but is thrown out and trampled under foot.” (Matthew 5:13)
I wonder sometimes about the church’s saltiness. I wonder sometimes about my own saltiness. When do “thoughts and prayers” turn into change and action?
2) There is no doubt in my mind that God weeps alongside of us today.
3) Despite all that has taken place, and despite the fact that we as a nation refuse to see the part that we play in these acts. I still believe in God’s love and redemption. I still believe that this world is God’s creation, and that this God is at work reconciling this creation back unto Himself. I still believe that we were created in God’s own image, and I still believe that God is at work attempting to restore us in this image.