26 hours of service

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If you’re like me, all you could really think of this weekend was the horrible massacre that happened in a small school on friday.  I couldn’t believe what I was hearing, as the thought that someone could actually gun down innocent children in cold blood was beyond my comprehension.  How could anyone so viciously and callously take the lives of children?  I cried as I pictured parents crying out for their children and imagined frightened kids encountering a deranged killer in their own school.  My thoughts immediately went to Laird and Leini, envisioning something so horrible happening to them brought me to my knees in tears.  I spent the rest of the evening in disbelief and sadness.

After having time to process the tragedy, I began to question how the God I believe in could allow something so horrible to happen to these children.  The left side of my brain has always questioned God, His existence and His motives.  There are things in the Bible that seem so far-fetched and unlikely to me that everything in my brain tells me it can’t possibly be true.  But when I begin to think about how hopeless and insignificant my life would be if it ceased to exist after my physical death, I can’t help but believe that there is a greater purpose, that there is a God in heaven somewhere and someday my spirit will live on with Him.

As I walked the half hour to church today, my thoughts were engulfed with the people that died on friday and I still tried to make sense of it all.  What purpose did the death of these people serve?  What good could possibly come of this?  I lingered in these thoughts as I walked; questioning God’s motives, trying to understand why this was allowed to happen and also empathizing with those who lost their loved ones.  And, as I typically do in these circumstances, I began to think of ways that other people might use these tragedies to create good.  You know how a victim’s family member might become an activist and end up on Capital Hill testifying for changes in policy and laws, etc.  However, I caught myself doing this and realized that I was pawning this responsibility of creating good from evil off on others.  Why couldn’t I be the one to create good in this circumstance?  Well…maybe I could spend 26 minutes in silence for each person’s life.  However, 26 minutes seemed a pretty insignificant amount of time considering the extent of the tragedy that occurred.

Eventually, I felt that God was telling me that I needed to devote more time, more of my energy to honoring those who had lost their lives and use this to help those in need.  I eventually decided that I would devote 26 hours in service to others, 1 hour for each person’s life that was cut short in this tragedy.  I have no idea how long this will take, with two kids and a part-time job starting soon, it may take me awhile.  But, I will do it, as I truly want goodness and love to come of this and for someone in need to indirectly benefit from this horrific tragedy.  More than anything though, I cannot bare the thought that these innocent children died in vain.

I want to add that I did not write this post to toot my own horn and boast about what my plan is, but more to encourage others “to be the change you want to see in the world.”  To not let other people be the ones who create good out of evil.  We all have the opportunity to make a difference in our world, no matter how insignificant it seems.

If you would like to join me in serving others for the victims of the Sandy Hook tragedy, please just email me.  My hope is to serve a variety of groups of people in different capacities.  I would love to have company and even more love and kindness could be shared.

This is a list of all the victims.  Please continue to pray for their loved ones that they left behind and all those affected by this senseless and tragic shooting.

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