The Horror and the Beauty


This post is just a reflection of events in the world and in my life over the past week.  It's a lot of pretty raw feelings and not a lot of resolution.  Processing in writing.  Still seeking God in it all.

A Plane Shot Down

I was in Amsterdam last week, at the downtown square for the Moment of Silence on the Day of Mourning for the victims of the shooting down of MH17.   Then I saw this video of this processional of the hearses bringing the remains into Holland.A terrible tragedy and a beautiful tribute.

Israel and Gaza

The death toll mounts as missiles fly both ways, killing so far more than 750. The New York Times wrote: “The war is terrorizing innocent people on both sides of the border, fomenting more hatred, creating an ever larger appetite for vengeance and ensuring that the cycle of violence will be repeated.”

It’s hard to find beauty in this carnage, but there are stories and pictures of heroes rescuing and sacrificing, of comfort and shelter given, of caring and compassion.

Mosul, Iraq

Christians in Mosul, one of the most ancient Christian communities, were forced to flee their homes under threat of death if they did not convert to Islam.

Many people and nations are receiving these refugees, even as the number of refugees—millions in the Middle East--continues to grow.  Countries continue to open their borders to displaced and disparaged.

Even in My Neighborhood--A Suicide

In my son’s house, a young man took his own life.  The pain persists, the tears flow, the questions remain.

Many reach out with love and prayer, offering comfort and help.

And endless more.  Read the newspaper.  Watch the news.  Look around your neighborhood.  Perhaps even your family.

Our fallen world, contaminated with sin, sabotaged by our selfishness, ravaged by our rebellion, is horrified, terrorized by what we do to each other.I struggle with it.  I hate to read about it, or watch it for real on the news or for fake in the movies and games.  I am horrified and terrified at it—for children, for women, for men, for cities, for nations.  How can we do this thing--to another, to ourselves?

I am brokenhearted on a global scale and for my son and his roommate’s family at a senseless loss.

And yet there is beauty and compassion and kindness and gentleness—among parents and children, neighbors, friends—and total strangers. Every day on Facebook you see videos of goodness and decency and sweetness.

I ask God often about the pervasive evil, but I also marvel at the goodness I see.

I resist the evil, I stand and speak against the treachery, I go and give to bring the change.

For I remember that God loves and Jesus died and the Spirit fills us with love and mercy and grace.  We receive the ability to be more concerned for others than ourselves, to stand in the gap and pray and rescue and forgive.

We have the heart and the will to sacrifice for the good of those whose pain is so beyond their control and beyond our comprehension.

God has taught me to give thanks, and that changes my view and my heart.  It enables me to see Him and His beauty, to understand He hates the horror.

He is good and beautiful.  We are His image on this earth.  We must stand against the evil and let His reflection shine through us.

C2014 Judy Douglass