I hear a mournful sound rising from the earth. The cries of grief and confusion coming from this nation are joining with those around the world suffering their own losses. Yesterday, we felt another wave of grief when we heard the news from Baton Rouge.
Hatred is on a rampage.
As I read of the deaths of the police officers, my heart was so heavy and immediately went out to their families. But that same heart skipped right over the death of the man responsible. Right over him. As though his death didn’t matter. As though there should be no mourning for him. And then God whispered Romans 12:15 to me and now I want to turn around and go back. I want to go back to Gavin Long’s mother and sit with her, comfort her. Mourn with her. Instead, I will say this to her.
I’m so very sorry for your loss. I’m a mama too, and I have only my imagination to tell me what kind of pain you are enduring right now. I know that when you brought your baby boy home from the hospital, the choice he made yesterday was not one of your hopes and dreams for him. I know that one day he went off to kindergarten and you probably cried. I know that he once held your hand crossing the street, ate your food with gusto, laughed, smiled, made jokes, cried. I know you were proud of him, worried over him, and wanted nothing but good for him. I know that he was once your little boy and that in some ways he remained your little boy. And I know that regardless of the circumstances, losing him must be the most pain you’ve ever known. I’m so sorry. I pray that you will know the comfort of God in this hour. I pray for His mercy to settle upon your heart and somehow ease the pain. I pray that you will sense His nearness, because He promises to be close to the broken-hearted, and surely you are that. I pray for you, and I mourn with you.
And I pray for us. That this self-destruction will come to an end. That hatred, fueled by fear and anger will not win one more day. Enough is enough.