What are we to make of tragedy? What are we to make of moments when our fellow Americans fear for their lives and suffer deep loss? Do we move on with life as if nothing happened? Do we rivet our eyes and ears to the television for up-to-the-minute details, or do we shut it off and shut it out? How do we cope with the unspoken fear that burns in our minds, “If it happened there, could it happen here too?” What do we do with our fears?
So many questions.
This week, my heart stirred for the people in Boston who hunkered in their homes waiting for word of a captured killer. I grieved for those fighting for life and courage in hospital beds, limbs missing, bones broken, and skin marred from shrapnel.
But I also grieved for the people devastated by a fertilizer plant explosion in Texas. At the same time they were displaced and wondering when they would be able to get back to the shards of their homes to sift through what remained, the news media abandoned their story to focus on an American terrorist.
That prompted more questions.
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Why does this person get all of this attention? Why are we focused on the motive behind his insane tirade? What of the people who lost their lives in the Texas explosion? Don’t they get fair media time? What about the people who died in tornadoes in the South just a week before? How do we forget so quickly? Where is justice?
Questions might seem to us as a sign of a lack of faith. A sign of insecurity.
But, I don’t think so.
Questions are a sign we still care. When we stop asking the questions is when we have given up hope. As long as we ask the questions, hope is alive. We’re looking for a solution. Answers.
I have hope because when I ask the questions, I always come back to one answer.
I ask, “Why? What can we do? Where do we go for help?”
He answers, “I am still here.” No question in his voice. Just affirmation that he is still in charge. Evil may be present, but it will not prevail.
So, ask the questions. But then listen for the answer. Can you hear the whisper of hope? He is here. Let’s not forget.