I entered worship this morning without glancing at the news.
If I had done so I would have learned that once again violence had disrupted worshiping communities in other places. In Kenya, two congregations were the attacked leaving 15 dead and 40 injured.
For all the survivors this day, this alternate lectionary reading, reminds us that death is not created by God.
God did not make death,
- And he does not delight in the death of the living.
- For he created all things so that they might exist;
- the generative forces of the world are wholesome,
- and there is no destructive poison in them,
- and the dominion of Hades is not on earth.
- For righteousness is immortal.
- God created us for incorruption,
- and made us in the image of his own eternity,
- but through the devil’s envy death entered the world,
- and those who belong to his company experience it.
- Wisdom of Solomon 1:13-15; 2:23-24
And, at the same time, I think that we can imagine the call of all that mourn being something like the experience of the psalmist when he wrote this:
Out of the depths have I called to you, O LORD;
I am almost completely at a loss for words at the present.
- LORD, hear my voice; *
let your ears consider well the voice of my supplication.
- If you, LORD, were to note what is done amiss, *
- O Lord, who could stand?For there is forgiveness with you; *
- therefore you shall be feared.
- I wait for the LORD; my soul waits for him; *
in his word is my hope.
- My soul waits for the LORD,
more than watchmen for the morning, *
more than watchmen for the morning.
- O Israel, wait for the LORD, *
for with the LORD there is mercy;
- With him there is plenteous redemption, *
and he shall redeem Israel from all their sins.
- Psalm 130
I feel outrage, and anger at the murderers. Evil continues to violate the goodness of God's creation. What did these innocent ones do to deserve such violation?
Nothing other than enter a sacred space and take time to come before the Lord in community for prayer...
NOTHING but gather in one place to re-member the Christ's body for strength and inspiration to serve for the glory of God. . .
I remember that these newly martyred join ranks of thousands who died because of their devotion to the Living God, the one true God who sent the eternal word, the co-eternal son, to live as a human to bear testimony to the love of God.
And then I remember the words of Jesus on the Cross, "Father forgive them."
I do not want to forgive the hatred that reaps death and mourning.
But neither do I want vengence...
all that I desire is peace and healing for the broken hearted.