Remember: A Prayer
[6:37 AM, 10/2/2017]
Hey ladies! I woke up and heard the horrible news in Vegas and I’m so so depressed and heartbroken about it. I just want to spread some love and let you know I love you ladies very much and value our friendship greatly ❤❤❤❤❤
I woke up last week, on Monday morning, to this message from one of my dearest friends. My heart broke in a million pieces. My mind raced back through the many other events like it, Columbine, Aurora, San Bernardino – the list goes on. I assumed that what had happened in Vegas was a shooting. Unfortunately, I tend to think this way because our particular generation has been conditioned to this: gun violence has become normalized. It’s messed up. It’s sad. And, it’s also true.
I hesitantly checked the news and I was right. At that point, over 50 had been reported killed and hundreds were injured. I prayed before I even got out of bed.
Lord, have mercy.
The rest of the day felt foggy and as I sat at work, rhythmically typing and listening to some tunes on Spotify, the ever-present question of, “what do I do?” kept ruminating in my mind and heart.
At lunch, I took a walk to get some fresh air. I brainstormed ideas or thoughts that might help. Maybe I should give blood? Maybe I should give to a fund to support the victims’ families? Indeed, there were several action-oriented things I could (and can) do.
When I came home later that night, I tried to absorb everything that has transpired in the last couple of months: Chelsea’s losses in her families, the hurricanes, the Vegas shooting, Charlottesville….
I mean, is it just me or has it felt like these months have been really hard?
It is overwhelming to sit with all that has transpired. As I did, a pronounced call to prayer came to me. Gratitude. Though much has happened in my own life and the world throughout this summer (and now fall), there is a steadiness of God that I have been unable to ignore.
In the midst of crisis, pain, loss, violence, and death, in me there remains a steely and steady trust that God is in this with us. I don’t mean to say that God is a bystander. And, I don’t mean to say that God allows these things to happen. If that was the case, what kind of God would that be? No, I mean that God that exists through and in us. I think God grieves with us. I think God celebrates with us, too. And so, I as I entered this call to prayer, I made a list of remembrances. It is my hope that by remembering, we can acknowledge that we will get through this.
We know this because we always have.
Remember: A Prayer
I remember when my brother was born.
I remember when I learned to ride a bike.
I remember making new friends.
I remember starting my first job.
I remember my parent’s divorce.
I remember changing schools.
I remember my parent’s remarriages.
I remember starting – and loving – field hockey.
I remember moving South.
I remember wondering if I was gay.
I remember changing my mind about my beliefs.
I remember seeing and witnessing real poverty.
I remember when grandma died.
I remember when one of my students was raped.
I remember living in Papa’s house.
I remember bucket baths.
I remember failing – and then succeeding as a teacher.
I remember leaving.
I remember coming home.
I remember coming out.
I remember depression.
I remember renewal.
I remember taking the job I really wanted.
I remember the Pulse shooting.
I remember Pride.
I remember when the Broncos won the Super bowl.
I remember moving near Washington Park.
I remember being brave.
I remember meeting Chelsea (again).
I remember falling in love (again).
I remember being bold.
I remember God, in everything.
God has never left me.