A WAY TO RESPOND
The violence that has disrupted and destroyed so many lives in Las Vegas is heartbreaking. It’s numbing. It feels hopeless to think that this will actually change anything. Why, God? What can we possibly do in the aftermath of such tragedy? It seems like prayer is a paltry response. What good will civic action do when it doesn’t seem to have done anything in the past? Will we ever rise above the pain and fear?
You might think, why should I be concerned with my little corner of the world when all this *gestures to the world* is going on? Well, there is call for concern…when we neglect to notice the distance between others and ourselves in our own spheres of connection we begin to see that separation as normal, even expected. It’s easier to disconnect and simply not care.
Today, heed the call to practice compassion: see that there is a space between yourself and others that is devoid of compassion and begin the work of making it smaller. Learn to embody compassion. Get the professional help you need for yourself. Invite someone to dinner. Eat lunch with a co-worker. Ask someone how his or her day is going and really listen. Write a letter to a friend. Send a thinking-of-you card. Embrace one another’s humanity. Make space for the unexpected. Aim to think of others before yourself. Spend your time and money in ways that build up and restore the world. We are all broken people and we can be made whole. Love is breaking and remaking us, daily.
These are all little ways we can become what the bible calls “ambassadors of reconciliation.” When we live with our hearts turned outward to the world God has called us to love, our prayers become sufficient and our actions become a healing balm on the hurting places of life.
And then…keep praying. Get involved. Work for change. Be changed.