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Saturday, February 24, 2018 2:08 PM

"It's Supposed to Be a Safe Place"

Saturday, February 24, 2018 2:08 PM
Saturday, February 24, 2018 2:08 PM

 

The image I saw on the nightly news burned deeply into my mind.  The picture was of a woman with an Ash Wednesday cross on her forehead holding another woman as they grieved the pain and loss of loved ones in yesterday’s shooting rampage at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.  Seventeen people died.  Fourteen others wounded, some that suffered life-threatening injuries.  None of us escape the suffering and pain of living in this broken world.   Often all we can do is gather each other in our arms and communicate, “We are not alone.”

Is there anything we can do when we enter the suffering of a tragedy where bad things happen to good people?  How can we respond and by responding, move through “compassion fatigue” to express compassionate action?

By our actions we can express the compassion of Christ.  Compassion fatigue may create in us the feeling that we can’t keep going through the stressful tragedies.  The result is that we harden ourselves to it.  If we cannot prevent it, we normalize it so we don’t feel the depth of pain and we become indifferent.  We must never let a school shooting harden our hearts to those in pain.  The body of Christ has never been more needed than today. 

How do we stir up the compassion of Christ?

  • Ask God to give you a compassion for those who are grieving. Pray for them as though they were your own bothers and sisters, daughters and sons.
  • As a means of putting compassion in the world, ask God to give you a way in which you might help someone in pain and grief today – volunteer, give blood, distribute food, call a neighbor.
  • Tell those you love that you love them. Don’t let a day go by that you do not allow the love of God to flow through you to someone you love or any one in need of knowing “I am loved.”

In the summation of yesterday’s tragedy, Sheriff Scott Israel said, “It’s catastrophic.  There really are no words.”  But when there are no words, we can always turn to the living Word..

                                                                                                See you Sunday,

                                                                                                Martus