It has taken me a few days to gather my thoughts on Boston. I attempted to write something on Friday morning when the city was in lock down and I had a dear friend on an airplane headed east to a science conference in the city. I attempted something over the weekend, trying to put words on paper to reflect the confusion and sorrow and pain in my head. All week I’ve thought conflicting thoughts as I’ve tried to reconcile what happened last week with our reaction to it.
And I’ve come to no conclusion whatsoever.
There are so many aspects of this event that break my heart. The bombing itself and the lives lost or changed because of it. A whole city locked in fear as police scaled the area for the bombers. Our reaction and cultural shutting in of the men who bombed the marathon.
I could go on for a long time on my fears for my friend as she landed in Boston, and rode a taxi through a deserted city to her hotel and how I hoped to keep hearing from her, simply to make sure she was alright. I can rant about my frustration towards my own country as we stereotyped two men and their country and culture, because we needed someone to blame.
I could list a long, long list of the ways my heart has broken in the past year. Shootings, bombings, Dr. Kermit Gosnell, Stuebenville. Our lives are not left untouched by pain or fear or prejudice. But I could also list a long, long list of the ways I’ve seen opportunities for the growth of our country.
Very often we forget that we are not alone on this earth. In one simple event, we can forget that the people we are blaming are in fact people. With families, friends, moral obligations, religious and political leanings, lovers, children, passions and hobbies. So quickly we place blame. So quickly we find someone to take the hit for whatever is wrong with the world.
And maybe I’m too gracious for my own good. I’m generally quick to find the good in a situation or attempt to understand why someone acted or said or did whatever they did or said. But it’s practically impossible to find good in situations like the Boston Marathon bombing or cases like Dr. Gosnell murdering innocent children.
But I cannot seek justice without seeing that there is a light somewhere in the problem. Whether it’s improved international relations between two countries, or stricter regulations on health clinics to make them safe and prejudice free, to make those changes happen, there must be grace given to a situation. Grace to a country whose motives we don’t know and grace to the regulators who didn’t see. God gave us grace. Shouldn’t we extend the grace we have received?
Forgive my disconnected thoughts. These are from my heart, such as they are.