I woke up this morning to what is one of my more favorite days of the year. It is Patriot’s Day. Now for those of you who know me know that I am not from Boston, MA nor have I ever been there. However, due to my friends I have become attached to the city. I celebrate Patriot’s Day every year along with my sisters and brothers who live in the states of Massachusetts and Maine. Every year waking up and putting on my Boston Red Sox Jersey, watching the start of the Boston Marathon, watching the Red Sox play an 11:05 game, and watching the finishing of the Boston Marathon. Today as I sat in my United Methodist History and Doctrine class horrific events began to unfurl. As I sat in a class break catching up on the events of the day, ensuring the Red Sox had won, and looking to see if an American would top the board with the best time, I noticed that two explosions had occurred near the finishing line of the race.
From 9/11 to Virginia Tech to Sandy Hook and now to Boston, my generation has been defined by terrible incidences that have shaken our society. These instances that take our breath and just make us think of the amount of pain and hurt the cover our world. I think of all the pain that has been caused by this specific incident. I think of all the joy that is conveyed on this holiday in Boston. All the happiness and how in a single moment that was changed. Within our world there is so much hurt and pain and it seems like it is ongoing and never ceasing. It is hard for a religious person such as myself to make it in this world because of all the horrible and terrible things that happen. It seems like anytime we open our mouths it is always the wrong thing. It’s not what anybody wants to hear. Often people want to become vengeful to the people who cause our hurt and pain. They seek to fill what happened with an end a way to close their feelings. Revenge becomes their life and they lose sight of the one who created them and the one who died for their sins.
In moments of deep despair we cannot forget Christ and his suffering, that have lead us to a world where we can love God unconditionally and he can give us an unmerited love called grace. It is true that lives have become tainted by the violence that occurred today, but we must remember that violence begets more violence. However, it is peace that begets peace. It is the love that we can show. The prayers that we can offer. The aid that we can give. That is what furthers the message that began with Jesus and God’s love for us. God’s forgiving grace and love that he calls all of us to share with the whole world. Remember that through your pain Jesus is there. He is walking beside you or carrying you through these tough times, but we cannot overcome this hatred and violence without love. The love that is grounded in Jesus our Savior.
I hope this makes sense and draws us to a place where we can be loving instead of hateful and vengeful. Remember Love Conquers all.
God, We offer a prayer for your hurting children. For those affected by this terrible incident and those who have witnessed another terrible act of humanity on earth. Allow us to remember the love that you have given us and remember that it is your love that can keep us going. You sent your Son to die for us to show us the love that we are to emulate in our lives. I pray you work in the lives of those affected. Be with them as they recover and as they are given life in whatever way that is, life eternal or life on this earth. Please guide us through hurt and bring us through to continue to praise your holy and precious name. In Jesus name we pray. Amen!