This is the week of July 4, 2016. I don’t know about you, but this is where my thoughts have been:
Baton Rouge. St. Paul. Dallas.
Dallas. St. Paul. Baton Rouge.
St. Paul. Baton Rouge. Dallas
Baghdad. Orlando. Brussels. Paris.
Baltimore. Cleveland. Ferguson.
Too many lost.
Some days I just weep for this world. For the lives that won’t be and the ones that won’t be the same. For the ones that were lost and the ones that have lost their way. For a tiny girl who sat in the back seat while her mother’s fiancé was slain for following an official request. For a man on the ground, empty handed, shot at point blank range. For men working to allow their community to safely say “This is not right” who were targeted for just wearing blue.
I don’t have any wisdom for this. I don’t have some pithy offering of observation or clarity or sincere wishes that could mean anything in the face of a mountain of grief. I care. I do. I don’t pretend that is anywhere near enough. Guns and hatred are a foul mix. We need to spit that out and get on with the real business of our days. I refuse to believe that killing each other for petty reasons is part of that.
So here’s what I wish: I wish that each of us reaches a little farther for the best in ourselves and our fellow humans. I wish that some gift of sight allows us to see the grace even in those we don’t agree with. I wish that we all move toward a world where the the value of another’s life is more than our need to express anger. I think of the sweet greeting offered to those around you at the end of some services: Peace be with you. And with you.
Peace be with you.