Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Tiny Graces, God IN Us

“For we do not have a High Priest [Jesus] who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need” (Hebrews 4:15-16).

The terrorist attacks in Boston last week — the first in its long history — sent shock waves through the community. Their visual and visceral impact will stay with its citizens for years to come. Amid the shock, grief and anger, questions of God’s involvement or lack thereof have inevitably surfaced.

Where was God? Why did He let this happen? Does God care?

Within the chaos, the mayhem, the senseless deaths and injuries, if you looked close enough you could see Jesus. In fact ... He was everywhere.

I saw Jesus' heart ... in the heroic men and women rushing to minister to those injured by the explosion – putting their own safety at risk to help the wounded and the frightened by offering whatever they could – a bandage, a cell phone, a cup of orange juice … a hug.

I saw the feet of Jesus ... at the finish line as throngs of marathon runners who, once they finished the race, kept running to Mass General Hospital to donate blood. So many came to donate that the Red Cross had to turn some of them away offering the following tweet of gratitude, “Thanks to the generosity of volunteer blood donors, there is currently enough blood on the shelves to meet demand. TY! RedCrossEasternMA.”

I heard Jesus’ voice ... at the TD Banknorth Garden as more than 18,000 Boston Bruins fans sang one of the most poignant renditions of the national anthem in the history of our country.

I saw Jesus disguised ... as a police officer carrying two gallons of milk to a family in Watertown who had run out but were ordered to stay in their homes as law enforcement officials conducted a manhunt in their town. And it was in the arms of a police officer that the children, who lived in the Watertown home where the perpetuator, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was hiding, were carried to safety.

I saw Jesus’ hands ... among all the Boston hospital care workers who were asked to work tirelessly around the clock for days and days caring for the nearly 300 people who were wounded. In particular, the Beth Israel medical staff who were asked to care for the bleeding and nearly unconscious Dzhokhar Tsarnaev after his arrest. Doctors and nurses tending to the very man that just a few days prior had bombed the city with his brother. Yes, Jesus was there ... in His scrubs.

As countless numbers of local and state policeman, military, and FBI agents came together in perfect unity to protect a city, Jesus was there ... in their midst ... as where there is unity the second person of the Triune Godhead is present.

It is easy during a time of sudden destruction and disarray to wonder where God is. We would do well to heed the advice of Fred Rodgers from the 60’s iconic children’s show Mister Rodgers Neighborhood. In his, The Mister Rogers Parenting Book he offers this sage counsel to parents trying to explain tragedies to their children, “When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, 'Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.’"

I would take this advice one step further. When you see scary things look for Jesus. He is there in the common everyday people who are administering His grace and love to others in a time of need.

Where was God? He was there in Boston on April 15. He was there in every runner that finished that race at a Red Cross donation center, every spectator that bent down to help someone, every law enforcement officer that put his/her life on the line, every hospital worker that bandaged a wound, and every person who uttered a prayer.

Quite simply ... Jesus was everywhere. 

10 Touching Acts of Kindness at the Boston Marathon 

No comments: