I needed to experience hope this morning after watching the devastating news the night before. I know I shouldn't watch tragic news late at night, because then I can't sleep. I was overwhelmed with sadness for the tragedy that struck so suddenly and changed the lives of so many in the southern part of the United States. I couldn't sleep thinking about the tragic loss of life, from the random, killer tornados. Such destruction, senseless chaos and loss is difficult to comprehend. One minute, these people affected by the destruction, had a normal life and within minutes everything they've worked for was gone, in the cruelest of fate. For some, their lives were taken from them. Images like that, can keep me up for hours at night, when I think of the real people living through that "hellish nightmare", a "nightmare" the survivors won't soon wake up from. I tossed and turned and prayed for them.
I had set my alarm for 5:30 and I was determined to watch the Royal Wedding in real time, as it was happening. So with a few hours sleep, I turned on the TV to watch a true celebration of love, a union in Christ and with Christ and I once again regained hope. In the words of Scripture that were read, in the wise reflection by the minister, in the meaningful hymns (which were sung to perfection), in the loving glances Prince William and Princess Catherine gave to each other, in the celebration playing out throughout England, there was hope and I needed to see those happy, joyous, faith-filled images early this morning. (I thought of the memory of Princess Diana and imagined her smiling down from Heaven, proud of her sons........). I needed to see and hear the depth and beauty that religion can bring to any tradition, ceremony or event, regardless of how much pomp and pageantry is present. If God is part of the celebration it has depth, meaning and grace, beyond what human beings can plan for or hope for. Jesus taught how much power there is in genuine love and in hope. Whenever Christ is present, hope thrives.
I was reminded and it was reinforced for me, that the power of love, hope and compassion will help to rebuild lives in the southern United States. Many of the people from the stricken areas of Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia and other states, were people of deep faith and belief. Their faith will serve them well, as they rebuild their lives and damaged structures. They will hold their faith tight, because in their belief and hope, they will gain the strength they need to go on......and good people everywhere will help them.
In your nature, eternal Godhead, I shall come to know my nature. And what is my nature, boundless love? It is fire because you are nothing but a fire of love.........
O eternal Trinity, my sweet love! You light, give us light, you wisdom, give us wisdom, you supreme strength, strengthen us. Today eternal God, let our cloud be dissipated, so that we may perfectly know and follow your truth, in truth, with a free and simple heart. St. Catherine of Siena
My Lord, what do you want me to do? I will do it! St. Catherine