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Light Shines in the Darkness

File 0001369031452Where is God when tragedy strikes like the one in Newtown, Connecticut? Where is Jesus when children are slain?

Jesus is and was right there. If we think back to the first Christmas, we'll find Jesus in the midst of the worst scenario. In Matthew 4:13, King Herod had discovered that Jesus had been born. In response, he did a monstrous thing: He decreed that all boys in and around Bethlehem 2 years old and under were to be killed. His parents fled with Jesus to Egypt.

It's unthinkable to me that this is the world that Jesus was born into! A dark, violent world. And yet the light shone in the darkness.

As an adult, Jesus told his followers in John 16:33: "Here on earth you will have many trials and sorrows. But take heart, because I have overcome the world." It breaks my heart that 26 people (20 of them children) lost their lives so tragically. Talk about trials and sorrows for their loved ones.

The promise, though, is that Jesus overcomes the world. This is what I experienced in my own life when my husband was tragically killed in a snowmobile accident: Jesus has overcome the world. In the midst of such great sorrow and loss, the one thing that sustained me was Jesus' presence in the midst of it. I felt undergirded by a comfort that can only be described as supernatural. I finally knew what "the peace that passes understanding" means. And that's what I pray for the families and community of Newtown--peace that passes understanding.

Where is Jesus when children are slain? I can't stop thinking of something a children's minister told me once. Tragically, her husband was murdered in front of their 2-year-old granddaughter (by the child's father). When the child relayed what had happened to her grandmother and counselors, she continued to talk about the third man who was in the room. It was Jesus. He was right there, weeping for what evil had wrought. And he was with the child.

Elie Wiesel wrote in his Nobel-Peace Prize-winning book Night about his time in a Nazi concentration camp. On a ghastly day, three prisoners were executed and the others had to file by the gallows. Elie heard someone ask, "For God's sake, where is God?" Elie writes, "And from within me, I heard a voice answer: 'Where He is? This is where--hanging here from this gallows."

Those who've journeyed through the trials and sorrows that this world brings, can attest that God is right here in the midst of this broken world, providing comfort and support.

I believe with all my heart that our loving God was present with comfort for those slain. He was right there with them, weeping over the evil the shooter chose by his free will. And he was right there with them, holding them in his loving arms. His light was shining in the darkness.

Posted at 10:59


Katie Wetherbee said...
So beautifully said, Christine...thank you for these words of comfort and hope.
December 19, 2012 12:54
Thank you, Katie.
December 19, 2012 01:13
Pam Robinson said...
Thank you so much for sharing this article. I will share this with others also that are struggling with how to talk with children. Beautifully stated.
December 20, 2012 12:55
Ebrahim said...
I really codu'nlt ask for more from this article.
January 1, 2014 09:52
Steve Alley said...
Thank you, Christine. Your words have such deep wisdom in them. Thanks for your heart!
December 20, 2012 06:17
Ebrahim said...
I really codu'nlt ask for more from this article.
January 1, 2014 09:53
January 1, 2014 09:53
Thanks, everyone. There just aren't words enough, are there? Our hearts are broken for those dear families.
December 21, 2012 10:02

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