I’ve barely slept this past week. At first, it was because I was sleeping with my son to help him through his pneumonia-induced coughing spells. For the last two nights, I have been so heavy with grief for the families in Newtown that I have not found rest. There is a verse in Romans that says, “…the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.” This is a grief that words cannot express, but ironically, I find comfort in writing. So, although this is a wine blog, it is also about my life as a mom. And today, that is about the only thing that seems to matter.
When I came home on Friday, the first things I saw were my daughter’s drawings on the refrigerator. So many families will come home to similar pictures, knowing they will be the last. Before Friday’s tragedy, I found myself frustrated at being awakened yet again. After, I cherished a few extra minutes to hold my sleeping children.
There is understandably more talk about gun-control*. How I wish that the answer were that simple. No amount of legislation, gun-control, or metal detectors will stop a broken soul from inflicting horror on others if they are set on doing so. The only prevention can be to get to that soul before it is too late. This is a generation in which too many have been overexposed to violence on television and video games. They have been under-exposed to loving boundaries and consequences. They are angry and fearful. They are vulnerable and hardened. The mental health problems are multipying; parents are exhausted with nowhere to turn. This cannot be sustained.
People are looking for reasons, for answers. There are no answers. We retreat from the media or we become obsessed with the coverage. There is no comfort there. We hold our children closer and reevaluate priorities. Oh, that this would continue. Please, talk to your children and their friends. Speak up when you see something. Fight the toxicity we put in our bodies and our brains. Love your children and those in your path. And Pray.
As a mother and a former Elementary teacher, I can imagine all too vividly the horror. Although I was not directly impacted, I have friends that were. Comfort and solace are nearly impossible to come by in a tragedy of this magnitude. There is another verse I have chosen to focus on. In Mark, we are told of people bringing their children to Jesus to be touched. He says, “Let the children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these.” The verse following tells us that “he took them in his arms, put his hands on them and blessed them.” I choose to, I need to, believe that he shielded their minds in this. That he was there to welcome them into his arms. `
May God be near. May he provide a peace that passes understanding. May he restore what is broken and bring beauty from the ashes.