Tag Archive | tragedy

remembering.

Tomorrow will be 12 years.

Christopher heard the call and was loyal and committed to the purpose and destiny he heard all of his life. Yet, the mixture of his zealous personality (do it right or don’t do it at all), and the certainty of purpose and assurance of destiny, fought with his tender heart.

With the tendency of feeling disqualified, it became too much.

I’ve been writing here for awhile now, with the purpose of being a small but steady light telling of God’s care during tragedy. I have not written solely about suicide, but the heartache of suffering in all its shapes and sizes.

I cannot speak to every heartache, but I do know the One who can.

I’m just a beggar telling another beggar where to find bread. And when you are hurting, you are begging for answers.

But we don’t always get answers, do we?

Some say, how could a God of love allow pain? I say isn’t it amazing how a God of love will comfort us in the pain.

It’s always been easy for me to see the big picture and not get lost in the details. That said, I have often found strength learning of the suffering which has come to mankind since the beginning of time.

There is a bigger picture. One that is difficult if not impossible for humanity to grasp. Try as we may, though, we form intellectual opinions based on what we see or understand, not realizing (or accepting) that just as the immensity of the universe cannot be understood in our finite minds, we will not understand why we suffer.

God’s ways are not ours. And in this I find comfort. Because it tells me someone is in charge of all this.

He has the answers.

The Bible speaks of the great cloud of witnesses” who surround us – those who spur us on to continue with perseverance  the path marked out for us. Men and women who faced intense adversity: ” … they were put to death by stoning; they were sawed in two; they were killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated …”

We can continue with world history and current events which reveal so much pain and suffering, along with many, many who have endured and persevered, because they have grabbed hold of something bigger than themselves.

I do not want to minimize pain by sounding trivial in the conclusions I have come to.  But even in my worst first moments of receiving the news, suffocating and pulling me down into an abyss of hopelessness and despair, I found a brief moment to catch my breath and see the big picture of human suffering. Looking back, this was God pulling back the curtain to show me a truth that would help sustain me.

I was not alone. Countless others have faced this and more. God wasn’t picking on just me. He wasn’t punishing me. He wasn’t rejecting me.

Pain will isolate us, particularly from God. It, like death, is an enemy. An enemy that God will deal with one day when he wipes away every tear and there will be no more sorrow or death.

This is truth.

The truth sets us free from the limitations of how we see things.

And so we wait.

God is not human, that he should lie, not a human being, that he should change his mind. Does he speak and then not act? Does he promise and not fulfill? 

chris-peru

 

Christopher Moulton

November 30, 1981 – September 26, 2005

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light to my path.

This might seem trite to some who are reading, but please know it is not meant to be.

I am familiar with tragedy.

I am familiar with great emotional pain.

Trite is not in my vocabulary.

Today, I am writing to Christians. Men and women who know the Bible is what it says it is: a lamp to our feet and a light to our path.

Yet, how often we neglect to remember this when we navigate through life, especially when it’s dark.

God gives humanity tools to use. In his goodness, people are not even aware they have used those tools and where they came from.

Christians know.

And yet, how often do we find ourselves going in a direction without the light to guide us.

It is very common and understandable to lash out at life, others, and even God when we’re hurting. The Psalms are full of the human response to pain.

If you stay in that state, you will become miserable and bitter. You will never find the peace you are looking for.

Many continue down this path, well, because we’re human.

Humans with emotions.

Emotions that need to be filtered through the light of God’s word. Emotions not tethered to something will wander to unknown places, causing even more upheaval to our well being.

God gently speaks to our pain.

Do you want to hear?

The words God speaks throughout the Bible is the very thing keeping me protected, calm, strong, patient, and yes … even joyful.

The joy happens after I have taken hold of his words of life as my own. When I find they work, the joy comes, because I know God is real and means what he says.

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photo credit: kudumomo

live.

We look at life through a lens.

We either see the good and are angry about the bad, or we see the bad and are thankful for the good.

forest

 

With destruction, there is always hope.

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The earth reveals who God is.

Why doesn’t he stop evil and tragedy?

I don’t know.

But I do know he brings something good from it.

It doesn’t make the pain go away, but it makes you live again.

~~~

Photo Courtesy:

Eggs&Beer / Foter.com / CC BY

 

losing a child.

Like a wave, the crest of heightened emotion will fall to find a path as it crashes upon the shore of a new day … a new week … a new year.

Life will demand and routine will resume.

The fathers and mothers of the Sandy Hook school shootings will feel helpless. They will tread water as raw grief pierces deeper and the numbness wears off.

Everyone leaves and the temporary buoyancy of strength leaves, too.

You cannot leave them. Not yet.

There is a gaping wound in their heart. And life is pulsating out of it with every breath.

Place your hand of quiet presence upon their heart until it beats on its own.

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The silence is deafening. Weeping openly was allowed.

Life must go on we tell them.

But life is on hold for them.

Let them. Please let them.

There are no words to comfort. All they want is their child back.

Time. They need lots of time.

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Time to learn how to live again.

Some will not want to live again.

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But they will.

~~~~

Photo Courtesy:

MrClean1982 / Foter / CC BY-NC

 macropoulos / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

Vicki’s Nature / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

fragile.

Life is fragile.

Yet, we aren’t always thinking about it or else we would be consumed with fear. God has given us the ability to live without looking behind our backs every minute. Even when tragedy comes, we soon forget in the sense that it doesn’t “stay” with us the way it felt in those initial days or weeks or it would crush us.

Consider how God has created us with what some call the “human spirit” to continue on despite.

It’s true. I just attribute this as God given.

When we create something -whether painting a room or decorating a cake – we step back and look at it from a different angle. We should do this with our life, too. Sometimes we have to see things in a different light. When we do, we find that God does love us – even when bad things happen. He has given us more than we realize to help us. We just need to see it.

joy.

Joy is not happiness. Although, happiness can come from joy.

Joy is a constant light that is not too bright nor too dim. It burns steadily in your soul and keeps you balanced. It is not hindered by the extremes of emotions. Joy can be felt in the midst of sorrow.

Sudden and unexpected tragedy causes serious pain and heartache. But God has provided joy to overcome the sorrow. It is the bulwark that keeps the sorrow from overtaking you.

Whether you believe in God or not, you may have already experienced the joy I am writing about today. That’s because God has given it to all.

Let joy be your strength today!