seems like such a short amount of time, doesn't it? I mean, there's tv shows that wrap up 30 years worth of a story in that amount of time.
I had had a kinda busy day, what with my life being oh so important in the getting things done arena; my house was clean and I felt like I had a bonus day. I was waiting for a few people to call me back, not the least of which was Melissa, college student and beloved -niece. Right? Just another day...but the thing is...
all of a sudden it wasn't. All because some broken and bruised soul couldn't find words to convey what he needed, or his pain (don't you think he's GOT to have been in some deep pain??). And so he took two guns and fired on his peers. His fellow almost-to the-beginning of their adult life peers...and something changed.
I expect horror when attached to war; that's why I keep my nephew (you know the one who was so bored one night he read my blog!!) in my prayers. We EXPECT awful things to happen when boys-turned-men go to war. Pray that it doesn't, count the days till they come home. We have come to accept seeing inert, limp bodies being carried in camouflage. But not in college sweatshirts.
I can't imagine, nor do I want to, what the parents and friends are feeling...what the siblings of those victims are thinking, wondering, weeping, maybe raging about tonight. I can't put myself in that mindframe...I can barely comprehend,not sure that I have, that this has happened.
I have known fear in my life: when my dad was kidnapped, my brother at war; when my babies almost died at birth; the tornado that we were all caught in. But I have not known terror. I thought I had. I have not. I have not known the sorrow of seeing my friends and classmates dying in front of me, or having to decide to stay with a wounded friend or save myself.
I have lived a tough life, but still am so grateful for each and every day. But these last 48 hours, it's a little close to home. Melissa walks across campus every day; Meesh will next year. Cassie is on her own...and they are such adults, right? But to me, they are still the babies with chubby fingers and curly hair (or no hair at all). They are still those sweet little voices asking a thousand questions and wanting another freezepop...they just are so on THIS side of their lives. I can't imagine, nor do I want to, if this had been them... and so, I just want to remember...the power of life, of love and dreams, of who we were created to be (reflections of our creator) and what we were created to do (love those around us in a dim reflection of how much God loves us). So how am I doing? I don't know...but I know I am grateful, and honestly, very very sad...and feeling a little selfish for being so glad that my girlies were and are safe...and that Joseph will be home another year. Life is short...maybe. Or long...but still...hug the ones you love today...and tomorrow...and the next day. Take the opportunity to get to know someone who intrigues you or who you admire. Give thanks for the moment...and remember the families who lost their light, their beloved ones, but hopefully, not their hope. Our hope has GOT to go beyond what we experience here on earth...beyond what we see and hear. I pray for these families...that they have someone to speak healing words to their broken hearts..to cry with them even when the cameras stop rolling...someone to walk with them through their grief and questions...some of which will probably never be answered)
I love this quote...it reminds me of who I am...and who you are...and the call on my life...and your life...
“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?' Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. ”
"There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in all of us. And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
I pray that we are liberated from our fears, that we trust God through this tragedy, and the next, and the next. Whether it's a personal one or a national one or an international one...perfect love casts out fear...and there's only one source of perfect love. Tonight, I"m going to rest in that perfect love...and that's my prayer for you too.