Monday, December 17, 2012

I couldn't send my 1st grader to school today

I became a flight attendant after the horror of 9/11. I flew for United Airlines, while people were still too afraid to board one of their planes. Because I believe in God, all-powerful and He ensures protection. 

“Because he loves me,” says the Lord, “I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.” Psalm 91:14

Earlier in that same portion of scripture David reinforces: 
If you say, “The Lord is my refuge”, and you make the Most High your dwelling, no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent. For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways...””

My heart is devoted to this God, who holds the universe in His hands. He is faithful, and He has proven faithful to me my whole life. 

Yet,I couldn’t send my 1st grader to school today. I just couldn’t.
Knowing He could have commanded His angels to protect those innocent children when their classroom was attacked, and He didn’t kept me from sending my boy to school today. I realize bad things have happened to good people for ages. Sin entered the world and this side of Heaven is imperfect, unjust. Still...

I want God’s protection to mean that my child will not be brutally murdered while coloring at his desk, not that He will spend eternity safely in Heaven, with Jesus.

As I explained the tragic events at Sandy Hook to my 6 year old, I only briefly touched on the bad guy that got into the school & killed workers &kids. I focused on the wonder of spending Christmas with Jesus, in a place where they will never again feel pain or disappointment and we talked of rooms with endless glue & glitter & not having to ask permission to use any of it!

My heart was torn, still. I wouldn’t be comforted by that idea if my baby’s body had been lying dead in that classroom, inaccessible to me because it was a crime scene. I want to spend Christmas with all three of my children here with me, where they belong. I made myself sick imagining those kids. Their cries. Their fear. Did they die instantly or writhe, alone in pain? And their parents...arriving at the school in frantic search...

Watching this tragedy unfold in the news, my response was to insulate my family from harm. I considered home-schooling, questioned summer camps, neighborhood play, & sleepovers.

Almost immediately I could hear God speaking to my heart:
Be a light. Be the good. “Stick your neck out” if you see someone in need, overwhelmed, or living recklessly. Inspire people to choose God’s grace and to follow His laws that protect us from our destructive human nature. Get in that school! Don’t retreat
Don't isolate your family in your house or with friends of like-minded values. Make a difference. Make a change. That's why you're here on earth. 
How did Jesus spend his time on earth? "It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick" He said. 
Invest your time &your skills to this end.

So that’s my plan.
Well, once I can get the nerve to send my child back to school. 

And about reconciling my belief in an all-powerful, omni-present God allowing such harm: well I suppose that ranks up with understanding why God, creator of humans, chose to give them a free will, with which they can choose to reject Him and choose evil. I don't think I'll ever understand. 
My security in God's protection is still quite shaken.
I liked it better when I firmly rested in "no harm coming near my tent".

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4 comments:

  1. man do i wish we were close enough for a coffee-talk!!!!!!! loved this post.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for writing this Tina.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Sigh. It's getting harder and harder not to live in fear.
    It's beyond understanding.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I think about how we are "joint heirs" with Jesus...
    we not only inherit eternal life in heaven...but suffering
    here on earth.

    ReplyDelete

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