In our feeble attempts to process the events of December 14th, Jeff penned these words. Though he calls his writings his "ramblings" his heart is expressed in these words. He graciously agreed to let me post them on our blog. _____________________________________________________________
Where is God in the darkness? Where is God in the pain and sorrow? Some would say that God is not there, or that God was never there.I cannot prove the existence of God. I cannot say look here or there, that is God. I cannot discount an individual’s experience. All that I can speak to is my own experiences. The event in Newtown, CT shakes me to the core. I too have the question of why. My heart is grieving. I never met any of these children or teachers, but I was in pain that day. I care because I am a human being, not because I believe in a God. I care because it is painful for all of us. My feelings are in distress regardless of the existence of any kind of deity. I feel because I am a human being, and that day 28 of my fellow human beings died, and that hurts. Days like these cause me to question why this could be allowed to happen. I have no answer. I do not know. All I know is that it hurts me so much.
Some would say that God has left you but not me.Huckabee does not speak for me. I am a Christian, but I do not believe that God has forsaken us because we have forsaken God. I do not believe that God is punishing us like some within Christendom believe. I choose to worship God or not like everyone else in the world. God is not insecure. God does not say that if I do not worship God that I will be punished for my lack of devotion. God does not take a record of wrong doings. Christ took care of that. I have a choice, just like the young man that decided to do the things that he did. It is a choice for us to live our lives the way that we want. God is not in the spreading pain business. God is in the compassion business.
The Christian Right in the USA believes that they speak for God and that God is on their side. God is on their side, and that is true, but God is on all of our sides. God is on the side of all of creation. The idea that God is against people, because prayer has been taken out of schools is a horrible misunderstanding of what God is. The innocent do not deserve to be massacred for a perceived slight to God’s sovereignty. God is tougher than that. Scripture says that the wages of sin is death. Our actions cause us to be separated from God. It does not, however, say that the wages of sin is pain and suffering. Jesus took care of that one too. In fact, persecution is a sign of our obedience to God. However, I am not equating this horrible event as persecution. I am also not saying that this was deserved punishment for neglecting something.
Some would say that God planned this.This is by far the most hurtful thing that could be said in this time. First of all it is a cop-out. It does not require us to think about the situation and seek for understanding, even if the understanding is outside of our grasp. It allows us to remove ourselves from the sorrow without confronting the fact that 28 people died, and it is extremely painful. Society says that, “everything has to have a reason, or purpose.” I say to you now, that some things happen that we do not like and saying things like, “God has planned this,” does not help, in fact is more harmful, and only because it is a bold face lie. God does not plan this to happen, God does not want for us to be pain. God wants to be with us.
October 17th 2006 is a day that I will remember for the rest of my life. It was the day that I lost my oldest son. The thing that hurt my wife and I the most was people saying, “God planned this” or “God must have other plans for you.” I call BS. God did not punish me. God was not trying to teach me some lesson. God was not trying to get close to me. It happened, for what reason I do not know. During the whole event I tried to stay strong for my wife, but at one point my pain became more than I could bear. I fell down on the floor of the bathroom and cried out. At that point I found out where God was. God was on the floor with me weeping, uncontrollably. God did not say things like “it was part of my plan” or “you could have another child later, when you are ready.” God was there crying with me. God was just as broken hearted as I was. God was with my wife, grieving with her. God was with my son. And on a crisp day in Newtown, CT God was inside Sandy Hook Elementary School, and inside the fire station up the road. God was there weeping.