Monday, April 15, 2013

Reflections on the Boston Marathon Bombings

Grace and Peace,

Earlier today I had the privilege of interviewing two candidates for a campus ministry position at Wyotech.  One of the candidates was curious about my interest in such a ministry.  It didn't take me long to answer.  I quickly said, "There are students at Wyotech who need to hear the Good News of Jesus Christ, and I believe it is our job to tell them."

After a long day of interviews and good Christ-centered conversation, I called my wife.  She promptly told me about the tragedy unfolding at the Boston Marathon. My reactions were many.  I experienced disbelief and anger, fear and pain, sorrow and concern.  And then I remembered the sermon I preached on Easter.

If you were in worship on Easter Sunday, you heard me say very candidly that my "Holy Week" was more of a crappy week.  In all honesty, Holy Week 2013 was a painful week of ministry for me.  It was one of those weeks pastors hope to avoid, a week that felt like Good Friday without the promise of Resurrection.

As evidenced by the bombings earlier today, our world is filled with Good Friday-like pain.  The depth of human brokenness is deeper than any of us realize, and I admit, there are days even I grow weary with the pervasive problems of sin and evil.  There are days (much like today) when evil seems to drown out even the boldest proclamations of Good News.  But this perception never lasts.

When Saturday of Holy Week rolled around, I was challenged (perhaps by the Holy Spirit?) to reflect on those moments when Christ was present, but due to my obsessive concentration on all the bad news of the week, I did not notice.  I felt awfully sheepish once I recognized the number of times I allowed the Good News to pass me by.  Here I was preparing to preach the Resurrection while missing the Resurrection all around me!

Today there are people who need to hear and experience our God of Good News.  They may be students at Wyotech or citizens watching evil unfold on a national level.  Who will point to Good News?  Who will stand in the midst of Good Friday moments and proclaim, "This is not how the story ends!?" Who will if not you and I, the very ones who claim to be Easter people?  As you mourn, cry, grieve and express anger (rightfully so) over today's events, may you also have the eyes to see the Resurrected Christ even in the worst of moments-- and help others to see as well.

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