A very rare thing happened as I pondered the topic of a blog post, and sat down to my keyboard….I found myself at a complete loss of words. Only a few days ago, this nation was stunned by the news of the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting. My heart grieved as the story unfolded in news throughout what should have been a normal December Friday.
As my weekend progressed I thought often of the horrific event that was consuming the news airways. I considered my own grief in losing a child and yet could not imagine the pain these parents are going through. I found myself considering so many memories and experiencing so many familiar feelings.
A couple of years after losing my son to cancer, a work friend lost their son to a tragic hit and run accident. She had shared with me that in comparison she could not have imagined going through my experience of knowing my child was dying, watching him and being helpless to do anything. Yet I could not have imagine a loss like hers of suddenly losing a child, with no good-byes. So again, with the news of Sandy Hook, I was feeling a grief for those parents that I could not fathom.
The events of a child’s death from a hit and run, as the events of Sandy Hook, were quite simply evil. We live in a world where there is a constant battle between good and evil. We have an adversary. The devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8b) Do you think he won’t target our children? Do you think they are somehow immune? The last time I checked, my children were “someone’s.” Everyday there are unthinkable acts against children. Sandy Hook has forced a nation to see that ever-present evil.
When tragedy strikes, some seem to become angry and ask “where was God in this.” Some seem to believe that because we live in America or because our money says “In God we trust” that we somehow are entitled to a special level of protection from God. We are a nation where God is no longer welcome in our schools, nativity or other religious scenes are no longer welcome on city, state and federal sites, and so God has politely stepped back.
In my family, in my home, in every area of my life, God is welcome. I am not a christian because I live in America. I am a christian because I recognize that I am a sinner saved by grace.
In my experience, the only words that make sense to a grieving parent are, “I’m so sorry.” I wonder, do you think the same is true for a grieving heavenly Father? He grieves for the lost. We only need to turn to Him and say “I’m sorry.”
New Town Connecticut, I am deeply sorry for your loss!!