Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.
~ 2 Peter 1:2
Most mornings I start my day by spending time in prayer and writing. This morning was much different. My phone rang just a little after 4 am. I learned an infant had died. I struggled to gather a pencil and paper to take down the information, and then a half hour later, I was on the road.
There are many things that go through your mind when you are faced with the unknown like this. "What will I find?" "What words will I possibly offer," and "Lord, I need You to be very present for me now."
While I listened to the parents talk of their special child, and how the child simply brought joy to their lives, I shared, "What a blessing you have been. You provided love to a child who only knew love her entire life."
The idea of only knowing love is what God desires for each of us. On this day devoted to love, as well as, the day that we begin our Lenten journey, the idea of unconditional love surrounds us.
After leaving the family, I then traveled to our office in Northwest Houston where I spent time placing ashes on the foreheads of coworkers, reminding them "from dust we were created, and to dust we shall return."
I was then off to the funeral of a dear person who had lived nearly ten decades. Again, the message was about love. When the service was over, her casket was lowered into the ground, where tonight she will once again lay next to her husband that she slept next to for over seventy years.
As I made my way home, the news of another tragic shooting in a school has left me asking God, "What will we discover next?" "What words can we offer to one another and to those who have lost their children?" "Lord, what can we do?"
I'm tired, and I wish that I had the words to find ways to express grace and mercy, as promised in the words of the 23rd Psalm. It is simply one of those days, where the shadow of several valleys try to overshadow the light, but I must remember that the light cannot be overcome, and that God is loving us all through each of these situations.
Stay in God's grip!
G. Todd Williams (c) 2018
Rev. G. Todd Williams lives in the Houston metro area and is a Hospice Chaplain and ordained Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) pastor.