Why does any of this matter? Why are we here? What’s the point of life? Those words were certainly going through the head of the latest perpetrator of mass violence in our country. This man’s history is only starting to unfold but we can already see that he was disillusioned with life. He struggled with mental illness and didn’t see a way forward in this life. The most disturbing accounts from that horrible day in Oregon were that he singled out Christians to be killed. Why? What had they ever done to him? What’s the point of any of this!?! I’ve struggled the past week trying to answer that. How do we respond to such horrible tragedy that captures our attention?
While we need to try to come to terms with what happened in Oregon and the other mass shootings across our nation, I struggle with the everyday tragedies that happen in our lives? Our charity partner for the month is the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Millions of women across this nation are facing the reality that rogue cells in their bodies are killing them. Something from the inside that they can’t control is taking their lives. Not a gun or natural disaster, but something that they will struggle with the rest of their lives trying to defeat. Brave women go through devastating surgeries and countless hours of chemotherapy and yet not always defeat cancer. Why? Why does that have to happen to them?
I wish I had a great answer for you. I wish there was something someone could say that would make everything understandable. Something that would help us understand why God didn’t save the Christians in Oregon or the millions of women that cancer has killed. I don’t have the answers, but I love the one that does.
You see, Jesus is crying right alongside me when He saw those Christians shot. He wept with me when a neighbor died of cancer right after having her children. Jesus didn’t promise to make sense of this life, He only offers His pierced hand in friendship. When I’m angry about another mass shooting, or sad about another loss of life to cancer, I turn to Jesus to help me get through my day. I scream and I yell, and in my frustration I even question His existence, but the whole time He’s with me. My friend never leaves me. He teaches me that tomorrow is a promise to no one. He teaches me that love is the most powerful thing in the world and I need to share it with everyone I meet. He teaches me that there is a tomorrow, many tomorrows, for those that believe in Him. He takes the messed up me right where I am and loves me, then shows me how to do that with others.
There isn’t anything that anyone will ever say that will help us understand why bad things happen to good people. I’ve known Jesus for a long time and He’s never explained it to me. He does, however, offer to walk with me through these horrible things. Walk with Him and I promise His friendship will make all the difference in your life too.