How Long, O Lord…

Once again, our hearts are broken.

God’s heart is broken.

Another shooting. This time a bar where college students had gathered for line dancing and fun. Twelve were killed including a police officer who ran in to try to stop the shooter.

How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I bear pain[a] in my soul,
and have sorrow in my heart all day long?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?

Consider and answer me, O Lord my God!
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death,
and my enemy will say, “I have prevailed”;
my foes will rejoice because I am shaken.

Psalm 13: 1 -4

Upon hearing the news Thursday morning, my prayer was “ how much longer”. How many more times do we have to offer up “thoughts and prayers”? Or worry that the next time it will be our community, our neighborhood, our family?  How long, O Lord? I want answers.

The Psalmist doesn’t record whether an answer was given. Instead the Psalmist proclaims that God is love and embraces God’s salvation.  “I will sing to the Lord, because God has dealt bountifully with me.”

We can wring our hands in worry or we can be like the Psalmist and embrace the path ahead. People of faith are people of action. We are called to  take action to address the issues that fuel the acts of violence.

I know it is overwhelming. There isn’t just ONE issue. There is so many things that leads people to paths of violence. Yet we are many.

Pick something. Learn about it. Engage with others in community who also want to do something or ARE doing something. Do little things and work towards that big things. All will make a difference even if it is just in the life of one person.

You can start by attending the November Presbytery meeting. Ron Bottrell and Lisa Baker, PDA National Response Team members, will be our keynote speakers along with local presenters. PDA has a history of responding to human caused disasters dating back to Columbine in 1999. The PDA Response team members will discuss how PDA assists local clergy and presbytery leaders following a disaster and the range of resources that are available to pastors and church leaders when an unnatural disaster affects their communities.

November Presbytery Meeting
November 13, 2018
Meeting begins at 1 pm
(PDA presentation will be around 3 pm)

First Presbyterian Church of New Vernon
2 Lee’s Hill Road
New Vernon, NJ 07976