When I arrived at work this morning, I had no idea that my boss would be waiting at the door for me with news of a tragedy just miles from where I live. In case you haven’t heard, a gunman entered a midnight showing of the Batman movie and opened fire after throwing in tear gas. So far, everyone I know is safe. The closest thing was a friend who tried getting tickets to the show but they had already sold out. M told me that she woke up to 6 anxious texts, and I’ve been fielding calls, texts and FB messages all morning.
I took the girls to Panera for breakfast. We ate bagels with cream cheese and sat in the air conditioning, filled with bustling customers who hardly took notice that the world had shifted in the early hours before dawn. The girls told me about their fish, about their upcoming trip to the mountains. All I could think was what a hard time it’s been in Colorado. I know other places have tragedies. I have been known to be a news junkie and I stay updated on too many world events. But Colorado, from Columbine when I was a kid, to the fires when I was a teen, then fires this summer, shootings at churches and now this–Colorado has had a rough go.
We took the long way home, through Daniel’s Park, because I thought, what if I never saw the park again? What if this was the last chance to view the mountains? The sky was such a sweet powder blue, so clear and clean, the colour belonged in the nursery for a newborn babe. The clouds were light and round, fluffy as cotton straight from a Mississipi field. It was surreal. Such things could not have happened when the day had dawned so perfect and beautiful.
I overheard a woman today at Panera say that she keeps waiting for life to “just happen,” as though she’s waiting for life to be lived instead of doing the living herself.
There are so many questions: FB and Twitter are exploding with “why God” and “how could He” and just plain old “why”?
But my friend S who attended Columbine would tell you there will never be an answer to the Why questions. We don’t know and we can’t. We can only choose to be love. I don’t know why it wasn’t JB, D or me and E who were at the theatre. It was senseless, it was horrific and tragic. All we can do is pray for those who lost someone, and move forward without forgetting that there are more important things than our houses, our things and our goals. There is only time, and never enough of that. And there are loved ones and people to care for outside our immediate circles.
And that, I think, may be all we can do. Choose to love; and pray that He comes.
pray that He comes quickly.