Monday, December 17, 2012

pondering sad news

We have avoided talking to our children about the tragedy that occurred in Connecticut on Friday.  Why not let them remain blissfully unaware as long as possible?  But it can wait no longer.  Tomorrow we all go back to school - I as a teacher, they as students.  Conversations will take place that I'll have no control over.  It must be done.

So, I pondered. 

And then I wrote this... (meant for each, individually)

Hey there,
We had a great weekend, didn’t we? I loved it!
While we’ve been having fun, though, some people who live in Connecticut have been going through a really sad time. See, on Friday morning a young man – 20 years old – walked into an elementary school with several loaded guns. He shot and killed a few adults and lots of children that he didn’t even know. It was horrible. 
You’re probably wondering why anyone would do something like that. That is a very good question. That’s what everyone is wondering. As your parents, we like to give answers for tough questions – or, even better, guide you as you try to find them out for yourself. 
But here’s the thing ... no one knows the answer to that question. Not your Dad. Not me. Not Pastor Nancy. Not even the President!  Yep, he went to Connecticut to try and cheer up the people who are sad, and he said the same thing I’m saying right now:  a horrible thing happened, and we don’t know why.  (personally, I'm most suspicious of those who claim to)
We do know this, though. We know that we need to love one another - really hard and really well - because we ALWAYS get it right when we love each other. What happened is scary, but there is no fear in love.  Love is always right and good and true, so we need to make that our focus. We can’t let the little things that annoy us cause us to treat one another badly. We have to let that stuff go, showing mercy and compassion to one another.  We have to take the time to do and say those things that remind the people around us how much we care.
The only thing that can overcome darkness is LIGHT and the only thing that can overcome evil is LOVE.  You are so loved.  I believe that love - along with every other perfect and beautiful gift - comes from God. Your life is full of God’s grace!
We are sad for the people in Connecticut today – that is right and normal. But we will not let it take away our peace or our joy. We will be heroes today. You can be a hero - TODAY – did you know that?  By taking the grace that’s been given to you, and giving it away to someone else, you can turn that person's entire day around.  In fact, you did that yesterday in church! You made SO MANY people happy with your play and songs. Some of those people were sad just like the people in Connecticut, but you made them happy.  That's hero stuff.
Will you do that today, too? Show love to someone who needs it. Give a smile or a compliment or an offer of help - and don’t worry if they don’t notice or thank you.  It doesn’t matter if they love you back, because you know you’ll get more than you could possibly need back here at home.
God is always with you. Always. And so is my love.
                                                            See you this afternoon,

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