Image courtesy of SiraAnamwong/
Image courtesy of SiraAnamwong/

I watched the events in Dallas and elsewhere unfold into the late hours on Thursday and could feel myself sicken at what I saw and heard. I know many people experienced the same kind of physical reaction, a kind of pervasive emotional nausea that oozed into the spirit.

Immediately, I turned to social media, but there, too, were words that seemed to intend to inflict more harm. Perhaps unconsiously or without meaning to. But, well, there was a lot of hurt all round that night – and there has been more to come as the story goes on.

With all the pain swirling around in Dallas and into our homes, added to our already painful illnesses and other chronic health conditions, we might be sensing even more “illness” than we did before. A kind of sickness from what is happening around us instead of only inside of us. It’s stressful to live in a world where some are so bent on violence and hatred. It’s even more stressful to think of that violence and hate darkening our communities or doorsteps. As we know, stress is a great enemy of our health (or what health we might have). And this kind of stress, public and powerful, exacerbates our worry – and can have a negative effect on our physical illnesses and pain.

As I watched and listened Thursday evening, I tweeted and sent off prayers. I’m still praying. And as I turn to God for grace, calm, wisdom, and stability in a very unstable world, I find that the stress caused by what I see is held off more and more by the very things I’m praying for God to bring. Yes, we can become what and who we pray if we keep at it. And if we join others in those very potent and wonderful prayers, turning our focus to our loving God, we can bring cleansing that begins at home and moves out into that stressed world.

We can pray as we watch the news. We can pray after we turn off the news and rest in quiet. The important thing is that we pray, and we join our brothers and sisters in prayer. Let God’s comfort pour over you and me, putting us back on right footing and our hearts to right focus.

Yes, let us continue to pray and invite God’s love in where it hurts the most.



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