Monday, December 17, 2012

Prayers for Newtown

I listened to President Obama speaking at the Newtown memorial last night and I was moved to tears once again for the victims of this horrible tragedy.  I have tried to stay away from the constant news coverage.  It has been like watching my worst fear happen over and over again.  But the president was so heartfelt in his message that I couldn't take my eyes off of the screen.  He managed to honor God and the victims, honor the job of a parent and make it clear that he would use "all the power of this office holds" to stop these horrible things from occurring.

I know I needed that reassurance.  I needed to hear that someone is going to try and fix this, or at least try.  But I didn't expect for him to capture the love we all have for our children in such a powerful way.  Near the end of the speech, he shared these thoughts.

"We know our time on this Earth is fleeting. We know that we will each have our share of pleasure and pain, that even after we chase after some earthly goal, whether it’s wealth or power or fame or just simple comfort, we will, in some fashion, fall short of what we had hoped. We know that, no matter how good our intentions, we’ll all stumble sometimes in some way.

We’ll make mistakes, we’ll experience hardships and even when we’re trying to do the right thing, we know that much of our time will be spent groping through the darkness, so often unable to discern God’s heavenly plans.

There’s only one thing we can be sure of, and that is the love that we have for our children, for our families, for each other. The warmth of a small child’s embrace, that is true.

The memories we have of them, the joy that they bring, the wonder we see through their eyes, that fierce and boundless love we feel for them, a love that takes us out of ourselves and binds us to something larger, we know that’s what matters.

We know we’re always doing right when we’re taking care of them, when we’re teaching them well, when we’re showing acts of kindness. We don’t go wrong when we do that."

And he's right.  We can't go wrong when we do that.  We all want to hold our children close and protect them from everything.  Sometimes we can't.  But that's where faith meets us and tells us that God will always watch over our children on Earth and in Heaven.  I have prayed without stopping for the families affected by the tragedy.  I hope that they are surrounded by God's love and that somehow, against all odds, their hearts will find peace again.

I pray the same for you today.  Know you are doing God's work in nurturing these beautiful young souls.  You can't go wrong when you do that.


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