Before I begin this week of posts I would like to pause and say something in regards to the devastating tragedy that our Japanese brothers and sisters are experiencing.
I am neither skilled nor wise at giving words of comfort or substance, I have contemplated what to say for the last 3 days and these words are still far from perfect, but I will humbly share some of my thoughts
I don't watch the news very often, but on Friday I sat with tears pouring down my face, watching homes, cars, and livelihoods wash away with the powerful tsunami tides.
Such awesome devastation brings the priorities of life and all the tough questions I would rather not ponder right into my kitchen.
I looked at those powerful waves, brought on by the terrible shaking of the very foundations of the earth and was shocked. How can one not feel small and adrift when such mighty forces can change life so quickly and drastically?
I live far from fault lines and ocean currents, but it would be foolish, I believe, to let the tragedy of the Japanese roll off my back and to sit secure in my North American comforts, thinking that devastation could never possibly happen to me.
No, I don't think this means I must live every day in fear, but rather in gratitude and prayerfulness.
Gratitude for blessings of circumstance that are mine for today.
Prayerfulness for tomorrow when such may not be the case.
None of us surely has any guarantees in this life other than that we are guaranteed to to lose something at some point. This life will be full of trials and tribulations; for some of us it all ready has.
Events such as this are a good reminder that to invest in the temporary comforts of this life is foolishness.
My daughter said it best when she saw the footage of houses, boats and vehicles floating about in a dark soup, "At least they saved the people... cars and stuff don't really matter right mama?"
Ave and I had a good conversation that day about the images she couldn't fully comprehend, I didn't tell her that not all of the people were able to be rescued, but we talked about how important every person was and what our response ought to be to others suffering. Her simplistic question was an excellent reminder to me of what really matters most.
This world is not built to last. The signs are everywhere and obvious, and not only televangelists and Al Gore think so. Tough questions beg answers when we are faced with the fact that our planet is in decline and the state of humanity's not doing so well either. Everyday the fighting and suffering around the world hits a little closer to home and leaves itself a little more on our doorstep; it's harder than ever to ignore.
Really, every moment counts. This life that we are here to make is one to be thankful for and one to take pleasure in, I'm not discounting that. Instead I am saying that a tragedy like this causes us to take stock of our priorities, question ourselves and the way we treat one another and this planet of resources God has given us.
My personal faith of course becomes the lens for which I view world events, and at times like this I am brought back to the core reasons for my faith and belief. I choose to believe in a hope bigger than this world. I choose to believe in a God who's heart is broken for his precious children, who seeks to save and redeem that which is lost.
I believe in a God who is powerful enough to do this and who asks that I be the hands and feet through which His love is made manifest.
I don't know if any of this has made sense... If any of it really can.
Surely the Japanese are in my prayers tonight.