A Lament for Parkland

I have not posted on the shooting in Parkland, Florida that left seventeen students, teachers, and staff dead until now, because I really had no words to offer. I grieve with those who grieve. I grieve with mothers and fathers, with sisters and brothers, with wives and husbands, with friends and with acquaintances, but I have no prayers or thoughts to offer. I decided to break my silence this morning. I wanted to share a Psalm of Lament. Nothing I read really expressed my feelings. Psalm 23 offers comfort and Psalm 22 expresses abandonment. I don't know of Psalm 12 speaks to the moment either, but it does seem to catch the feeling that "the faithful have disappeared from humankind." I know there are no easy solutions. I know taht there will be trade offs if changes are made to our laws that might restrict some "rights." But are not the lives of our children worth it?  So, I offer this Psalm as a sign of my frustration, my anger, my grief. 

I believe that God is love. While I struggle with this premise, I believe that God's love is non-coercive and uncontrolling, which means that if God is going to do something, God will do it in partnership with God's people.  We pray that God will do something, and God reaches out and says -- Join me. Are we willing to do so, or will we continue to let the vileness of violence define our humanity? So, I offer this lament, in memory of those who died and in solidarity with those who survived this latest attack on those whom God loves. 

Help, O Lord, for there is no longer anyone who is godly;
    the faithful have disappeared from humankind.
They utter lies to each other;
    with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.
May the Lord cut off all flattering lips,
    the tongue that makes great boasts,
those who say, “With our tongues we will prevail;
    our lips are our own—who is our master?”
“Because the poor are despoiled, because the needy groan,
    I will now rise up,” says the Lord;
    “I will place them in the safety for which they long.”
The promises of the Lord are promises that are pure,
    silver refined in a furnace on the ground,
    purified seven times.
You, O Lord, will protect us;
    you will guard us from this generation forever.
On every side the wicked prowl,
    as vileness is exalted among humankind.  [Psalm 12 NRSV]

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