In the wake of tragedy

My heart hurts.

How do you respond to such a tragedy? Anger, confusion, hatred, sadness, shock, and many more emotions go through our hearts and minds.

I can’t offer up words of comfort. It seems so trite.

I can only love my neighbor as myself. And right now that means putting my arms around those mothers and fathers and brothers and sisters who have just faced a most unspeakable tragedy, and weep with them.

Jesus said weep with those who weep.

Today I weep.

Later there might be more words to offer. But today I simply weep.

I weep for that Mom who will have to try to make Christmas special for the other children while facing the worst tragedy of her life.

I weep for the hugs she will never get.

I weep for the times she regrets not saying I love you.

I weep for her as she thinks back on saying goodbye yesterday morning and wondering if she said I love you as her child casually jumped out of the car.

I weep for the birthdays that will cause her to remember.

I weep for every December 14th that will cause her to relive this scene over and over.

I weep for her as she tries to help siblings understand this, when she herself doesn’t.

I weep for her on Christmas morning when she puts away the presents that were already purchased for her child.

I weep for her when she sets one less place at the table next week.

I weep for her when she walks by her child’s bedroom door and looks in to an empty bed. An empty room. A lifeless place.

I weep when she hugs her child’s special teddy bear and tries to put herself to sleep with her tears.

I weep for her when she has no more tears to shed, but desperately needs to shed them.

I weep when she has no words to give but must give them for her other children’s sakes.

I weep when she has to go on living and normal life seems trivial.

I weep because this should not be.

Today I wrap my figurative arms around my neighbors in Connecticut. I shed tears with their tears. I love them because they are my fellow-man.

Even though I walk through the valley of shadow and death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.




  1. Thank you for expressing so well the thoughts of our hearts during this time.

  2. Very well said. I could hardly read it through tears. Only a mother truly understands what these parents must be going through. My prayers are with them. (I referred people on my blog to this post on yours.)

  3. Exactly! ;(


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  2. […] it even possible to weep with those who weep in the wake of tragedy, and still have a joyful Christmas? The simple answer is yes. It is the ability of humans to be […]

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