While watching her two little sisters cross from life to death before her very eyes, the eleven year old tried to stop it, she texted several, just before it all came to a silent halt.
So by the time the woman who birthed her had it pointed square to her head, she knew where the bullet would land next. Did she cry or pray or scream—I wonder this. What could she have been thinking, knowing her decade was over without another blink to spare. I simply don’t understand. My eyes don’t even know how to make those kind of tears.
Tonight four lives of a dear friend gone just like that—it happened in a blink.
At what point must we reach in order to act in such a way? How many bad days and dark nights must we endure, unnoticed, before the only way out that actually makes sense is silencing our kids and then turning the trigger head on. How did we get here, here to this place that I cannot imagine, this place where death looks better.
I say I can’t imagine and yet I knew it in the dark too.
I hear my body groan as deep cries out to deep, utterances of this body that is longing for home and unsure how to walk the straight and narrow through this foreign land.
And today, the fallenness paralyzes me.
A baby lost in the womb. A mom shooting her three kids. Five high school boys drag racing collide with a pole and that’s it—several lost and the rest fighting to hang on. And that is just today. That is just in my little world, the people I hold close and the faces my eyes search for in the crowd. That’s just my world.
I find myself ranking it in my head. Which is worse then the other? If it were me, if it were me being afflicted with such pain, me in those midnights unceasing—could I really press on as Job? It is truly all joy, could I chose to make it so?
Truth—I don’t think I would. Even now, the burden hanging across my shoulder blades lingers and beneath the weight his mercy finds no wedge, not even in the morning, because I pile it so darn high.
I can’t go about my night like none of it matters. I can’t watch the same silly documentary or care so much about my grade on my first test today. I can’t prepare for a busy weekend ahead or the pastor sleeping in my bed or my Egyptian friends I have to meet for dinner in an hour, raccoon eyes and all.
It all looks different, a whole lot darker like the sky which holds the storm brewing as my fingers glide across these keys. The calm before the storm—or during?
You know sometimes you can just smell it—the leaves turning over and the smoke hanging between the mountain-tops and the tears about to burst forth from His eyes. He wept. He still does. As He watches His creation attempt to give and take life, to understand the stars and to act a fool.
I wonder what He is thinking—weeping in sorrow or laughing over our little attempts to be He who made the stars and counts them, who gives life and calls us home, our desperate desire to control.
The clouds gather and the shadow lingers and the wind curls up around your waist and you remember that exact moment and something tingles up your spine as the chill bumps ride across your arms like a kite through the blue sky on a really good day and you are silent because you know that He is God—weeping and laughing right there on the throne.
But on the throne—still on the throne, always on the throne,
I know He is. I smell Him tonight, even as I grieve something unknown and wonder about the things that are not my reality but I know they could and I just have to blink into the fear because that’s how He made my eyes.
As I blink upon the pain and suffering I wish I could close them and tell Him He is good and stop right there.
It’s easier then, isn’t it?
We all wish we could blink it away—or just stop blinking all together, that maybe that would be better.
But one day I am going to blink and see His face and oh glory all the rest falls away.
So yes, the pain is beyond my comprehension and days like today I just don’t quite know what to do with but cry out “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God almighty who was and is and is to come” because that is the only hope I have in such a messed world where moms kill and cars race into tress and babies die in the womb.
Today, I am just thankful for Jesus because life apart from Him is hopeless.