Have you thought that thought ever? When sitting in a restaurant and you see a frail young girl with a scarf on her head and you know, you just know because you once wore those scarves, that she is bald and battling cancer. And it sucks! It really sucks! And it is so not fair for one so young to have to face that. Or when a beautiful soul finds themselves addicted to a substance you know could take their lives – as it has so many others. Or when a loved one chooses to take their own life. Or when you watch a once strong man fade away as Alzheimer’s ravages his mind and your heart, day-by-day, month-by-month, year by long year.
Or when you see the faces of animals neglected, abused and forgotten and you think this is not how it is supposed to be! Or when you see migrant children being taken from their parents, parents whose only crime was to try and protect them, to take them out of harms way. And you know you would do the same if your babies were at risk. And our plan is to build a wall instead of opening our arms which makes you shake your head in helplessness. Or when there is yet another mass shooting. Or when the church offers condemnation and division rather than acceptance and love.
We aren’t living in the garden are we?
Have you ever wondered if God sees all of this, hears all of this, knows all of this? Have you, with clinched fists, yelled to the heavens, “Where are YOU?” I have. It seems lately that I ask it more often than not. Maybe it is the times in which we live or maybe it is my soul seeking greater connection to my God and others with similar queries.
And maybe I’m just honestly tired and fed up with the amount of hate spewed across all media in an endless cycle of destruction. Aren’t you?
So I read, I garden, and I crochet. I walk, I weep and I visit. I embrace my love and kiss my grands. And I remain still in holy silence seeking the One. And while the questions remain, Silence did remind me of the violent world into which Jesus was born. That world and time saw the methodical killing of baby boys, of stark division within that culture between the haves and the have-nots, of racism, sexism and abuse. Living in an occupied land, Jesus must have sensed the unrest and the many threats that surrounded, that permeated the very air he breathed. Seeing his friend die we are told that he wept. Loss will do that. And then there is the ultimate violence of his brutal execution on a cross. So yeah, I guess God does know.
And in knowing, what did God do? God forgave. Wow! God chose love. Double Wow! So maybe it is that simple and that difficult – that through the darkness of disease, violence, injustice – we are to forgive and to love. I think it is our only way forward because what we are doing isn’t working out so well. So, I’m in.