We want answers.
When tragedy and violence shatter our peace we want answers. Why?! How?! Who?! How could God let this happen?! Our laments rise like incense, meeting storm clouds of emotion.
Today, the laments are heavy in the city of Boston. The bombings at the marathon yesterday cause our nation to shudder.
Many are crying in Iraq today too. Waves of bombings there yesterday killed at least 20 people and injured more than 200. The sorrow knows no borders. What about the people who deal with violence in places like the Central African Republic or Syria without much attention or help from the world community? God help us.
The laments are also thick in Iran where there was an awful earthquake just a few hours ago. Christ hear us.
The laments are constant in hospitals and funeral parlors where intense suffering is often too sudden. God have mercy.
Thanks be to God we are not alone in all this. The good news is that God hears our cries and that God is intimately with us as we suffer.
Thanks be to God that Jesus taught us what to do. This is what Jesus said:
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. – John 14: 27
We can have faith. We get to take care of each other. We need each other. We really can only do this together. In community with Christ we can make peace, pray and help one another. With Christ in community we can offer healing and hope. This compassion is the heart of peacemaking and Gospel living.
Mr. Rogers, with his simple wisdom, understood this well. If we look around within the human community, we can quickly recognize the peace of Christ alive and well. We don’t need to be afraid.
Thanks be to God Christ is alive and well and among us. Christ hears our cries and knows our pain. Christ is with us, helping us and healing us through the arms of our loving neighbors.