Holding on to Hope

Two weeks ago today we were waking up to hear the tragic news about Las Vegas.  It took our breath away, broke our hearts and if you’re like me, caused you to question, “why?”

Why did one person feel so much hate toward innocent people, many of them splurging on a trip and concert to celebrate big life events, anniversaries, Birthdays, etc.?

What happened Sunday October 1st sent a lot of us reeling. As I compared notes with family and friends, we all expressed a profound sadness, permeating every minute of the day. Several of us shared with each other how we could relate to tragic loss.  For example, I shared what it was like to lose my sister-in-law Dana when she was only 31. She was my husband Glenn’s closest friend.  She tripped and fell down the stairs in a shopping mall.  It severed her brain stem and she was immediately gone.  That changed our lives forever.  We still miss her so much.

There are three things that have kept me focused on hope through my own personal loss and now the worst mass shooting in modern history and I pray it will refocus your heart on hope as well:

1) Love always wins over hate.  The countless stories of heroism; people running toward danger to save lives; and reaching out to those who are hurt and lost loved ones, all overwhelm me with joy.

2) I refuse to believe the world is getting worse.  It’s easy to believe when you look at the headlines, and I have to fight against it every day.  But if you look at the cold, hard facts about our world, people are living longer, the poor are rising out of extreme poverty at an extraordinary rate, violence is down, etc.  That inspires me to want to do more to help others and make the world even better.

3) Nothing, not even losing a loved one or getting a life-changing injury at the hands of one man in a hotel room, can separate us from the love of God. (Romans 8:38-39)  He loves us so extraordinarily, so unconditionally, so personally, that He promises to “bottle our tears.”  (Psalm 56:8)  You can trust Him with your questions, your anger, and your fear.

We’ll never understand this side of heaven why such a tragic event had to happen in Las Vegas.  But when we focus on love, hope and joy, it gives us the strength for another day.

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