“A cry is heard in Ramah— deep anguish and bitter weeping. Rachel weeps for her children, refusing to be comforted— for her children are gone” (Jer. 31:15). “Abhor what is evil… Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Rom. 12:9, 21). “He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death... (Rev. 21:4)
Lord Jesus, extreme sadness, the vulnerability of fear and anger… tears, questions, disbelief, numbness… and one prolonged cry, “How long, O Lord?”—all of these come easy for us today, here in Nashville.
First, we pray for grieving families, children, friends, colleagues, neighbors—those most directly impacted by the terror and trauma of the attack at Covenant School. Jesus, you do and will “hold us fast.” Hold us tighter. Hold us in our “deep anguish and bitter weeping.” Hold us as we hold one another. Hold us, as we cry out…
When, Jesus, when? When will we never again have to pick caskets for our children, wear black, or be suspicious of anyone anywhere anytime?
How long, Jesus—how much longer do we have to wait for defeated-evil to become eradicated-evil? That Day is certain, but we want it now. When will there never ever again be any form of harm? (Isa. 11:9). Until then, you tell us, “Don’t be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” But for the Gospel, this would mock our sensibilities, Jesus. Help us. Free us. Hold us tighter.
Free us to live and love towards the Day when all swords, spears, and guns will become instruments of tilling, gardening, and mutual nourishment. (Isa. 2:4; Joel 3:12; Micah 4:3)—the eternal Day when we will we finally and forever “feast in the house of Zion” (Psalm 126:1-3).
Jesus, we know in the courts of heaven, there’s a calendar of grace and providence. And we know if we knew what you know, our hearts would be at rest. But today… thank you for the freedom to hurt so deeply and ask so intensely for you to hurry-up the Day of wiped tears and no more death. So Very Amen.