Thursday, November 12, 2009

Prayers for Fort Hood

I just read the text of the speech Obama made Tuesday honoring the 13 people killed in the recent Fort Hood shooting. He named each of their names and told their stories, and I was saddened and moved as I read; Moved by the lives that they lived, saddened by the breadth of the loss. For those who pray, I encourage you to read this speech, praying for the families of each person named as you read...and for the Fort Hood community and the wounded still recovering.

I'd also like to share something a woman I knew shared with me shortly after the 9/11 tragedy. I was reminded of it as I wrote this today. The following is her words:

Trying to explain today's tragedies to my 6 year old son, I said, "Jonah, we need to pray to Jesus, because bad people have crashed airplanes into big buildings, and lots of people have had one of their family members die today."

Jonah said, "O.k. Mommy" and he folded his hands, then on his own initiative, he began to pray outloud. He prayed a prayer that both surprised me and humbled me.

Jonah said, "Dear Jesus, show those bad men your goodness. Blast the devil from their hearts Jesus, and blast it full of your goodness."

I was shocked. I had not asked Jonah to pray for the "bad men", in fact, it had not even crossed my mind to pray for the terrorists behind these awful events.

Just a few weeks ago in Children's Church, Jonah's memory verse had been "Love your enemy". Jonah had been very impressed by this particular verse, because he talked about it with me and his Daddy, and his prayer today proved that he took that verse to heart.

Today God used my son to show me that we are truly to be "as little children", and to put our trust in Him, our Father. In such a fearful time, He is the only one we can turn to who can bring comfort and healing to our hearts, and to the hearts of those grieving.

Only God can bring change to a heart, and God desires that we pray for all who have been effected by todays tragedies, the innocent hearts, as well as the guilty hearts.

With this in mind, remembering Jesus' call to love our enemies and pray for those persecute us, I believe that God would also want us to also pray for the shooter who caused the Fort Hood tragedy, Nidal Malik Hasan.

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