The Las Vegas Massacre leaves me with more questions than answers: Why did the shooter commit this act? What will it take to enact meaningful gun control? Is this really the price we have to pay for freedom?
Hope can be difficult to find in times like these. Resignation, frustration, and anger seem to be an easier path for me to follow. Easier, maybe, but they all lead toward the same place: suffering.
Where do I find hope? I'm not sure. Sanguine words about faith and God and love can seem so trite these days. They're not really helpful. They don't teach me how to hold the pain with compassion.
Maybe that's where I should look. Maybe that's where I'll find it: in holding my pain, my fears, my sorrow--in short, my suffering--with compassion. And that's where I'll find God.
Find a quiet place to sit. Breathe in God's love. Breathe out all your fears, worries, and anxieties. Allow you body and mind to become still as your breathing becomes gentle, slow, and deep.
Repeat Psalm 46:10, following this pattern:
Be still, and know that I am God.
Be still, and know that
Be still, and know
Be still, and
Rest in silence for a few moments, then repeat the pattern. If any stray thoughts compete for your attention, name them, and then let them drift away.
Keep repeating the pattern until you stop--you'll know when it is time. This meditation is only as long as it needs to be. Trust that the Holy Spirit is guiding you.
Close with a simple Amen.
This Week's Meditations
Monday: How do we make sense of something so senseless like the Las Vegas Massacre?
Tuesday: Thoughts and prayers are good, but they are not enough.
Wednesday: St. Francis of Assisi reminds us that we must have peace in our hearts before we can preach peace to others.
Thursday: If we want to be peacemakers, we must first disarm ourselves.
Friday: In the wake of the Las Vegas Massacre, let us commit to a life of nonviolence.