Anger, Grief, and… Hope?

I, along with countless others, am deeply grieved by the shootings at a Jewish community center and a Jewish assisted living facility in Kansas.

“A shotgun-wielding man opened fire at two Jewish sites in suburban Kansas City on Sunday, killing three people — including a teenager and his grandfather — and shocking a peaceful community.”

This happened on Palm Sunday, as Christians began a week reflecting on and praying with the story of Jesus’ journey to a horrific death. It happened one day before Passover, when Jews commemorate and celebrate God’s freeing them from slavery in Egypt more than 3,000 years ago.

“The shooting suspect booked into the Johnson County jail as Frazier Glenn Cross is better known as F. Glenn Miller, a southwest Missouri man long known for deeply anti-Semitic and racist statements.”

I pray today for peace and healing, for the miracle of God’s grace to somehow eliminate – yes, free us, free us all from racial and religious hatred and violence.

I ask forgiveness for the sins of Christianity against Jews, sins that have deep, violent roots.

I pray for the faith and courage to join wholeheartedly those who work to cooperate with God’s invitation, call, push toward justice.

I long to live fully in the freedom of Love – into the time and place when:

The wolf shall live with the lamb,
the leopard shall lie down with the kid,
the calf and the lion and the fatling together,
and a little child shall lead them. (Isaiah 11:6)

With Job I plea: “Where then is my hope? Who will see my hope?” (Job 17:15) And with Habakkuk:

O Lord, how long shall I cry for help,
and you will not listen?
Or cry to you ‘Violence!’
and you will not save?
Why do you make me see wrongdoing
and look at trouble?
Destruction and violence are before me;
strife and contention arise.
So the law becomes slack
and justice never prevails.
The wicked surround the righteous—
therefore judgement comes forth perverted. (Habakkuk 1:1-4)

How long, O Lord. How long?

Newspaper excerpts are from the Kansas City Star:

All scripture passages are from the New Revised Standard Version.


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