For most of us… tragedy isn’t foreign.
When we dial the microscope in and look into our live, we all encounter it.
As a pastor, I’ve dealt we spouses who’s husbands and wives have had sexual affairs. I’ve had parents who have lost their children in tragic accidents and through tragic diseases. I’ve held the hands of very wealthy men as they passed from here into eternity.
We’ve all seen it. It’s touched your life and mine. It will touch us again.
The real question for us, personally, isn’t about the tragedy at all. It’s about what it does to me.
In the wake of the tragedy in Newtown, CT at Sandy Hook Elementary School the floodgates of commentary opened up on Twitter and Facebook.
I saw people that I know personally, people that I trust love Jesus publish comments like these:
- “When is good every going to win?”
- “This world is going to hell.”
- “You just can’t trust anything any more.”
- “Where is the good in this world?”
My heart is grieved, as an educator (by trade) and a pastor over what happened at Sandy Hook. If there are two places children should be trusted to always be safe, let it be at our churches and our schools.
But… Where is the hope?
I’m completely ashamed that as believers we mourn the same way that people who have not encountered the Gospel do.
Here’s why… the Gospel of Jesus ALWAYS gives us hope!
“Surely the Gospel, where a loving Father loses His Son, Jesus, to sin, has something to say about this tragedy.” –Darren Patrick
Here’s an honest question for you: Where is your hope?
Maybe nobody’s told you this, but you don’t have to go through difficult situations without hope. You don’t have to get angry. You don’t have to worry. Make no mistake, you have permission to grieve, but that grief should look very different. It’s ok to cry and be emotional about tragedy, but it looks different.
Grieve with hope.
Cry with hope.
And… what do we hope for? Wrongs to be made right. Brokenness to be healed. Lost to be found.
How can we do that? Why can we grieve with hope?
Because Jesus has won. He died carrying our sins. He died paying the penalty we all should have paid.
He didn’t stay dead. He walked out of a borrowed tomb. He overcame death and the grave.
Death and tragedy are not the end, and we shouldn’t act like it is.
“Do not grieve like those who have no hope.” 1 Thessalonians 4:13
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