The glass silently slips from my hand and tumbles to the tile floor with the inharmonious cacophony that heralds the assault of a thousand shards of glass… waiting… waiting to pierce and bleed.
With broom in hand I begin to sweep the shards into a pile in vain efforts to organize chaos. I find shards of brokenness in places you cannot fathom they have traveled and ponder on the law of physics and yes, the gravity of the situation. Yet another broken glass, will this one be missed?
How many shards of brokenness remain hidden beneath the surface of my being? Precious multi-colored facets each representing a painful period of life that I am yet unwilling to relinquish. Isn’t pain after all, proof that life continues on?
When tragedy strikes, when trouble comes, when life disappoints we stand at the crossroads between hope and despair, torn and hurting. Local, national and world news all tear at the fiber of our souls and we cry out in unison, “Oh God! How much more brokenness can we take?”
And God recalls the midday darkness and brokenness of a son impaled upon a cross with a crown of thorns thrust upon his brow, blood trickling like tear drops falling from heaven.
I wonder about the rescue workers gathered together to accept their assignments in recovery, and my heart is pierced. I am moved to tears thinking where is the Holy One? Where is the One to break the bread, to pour the wine, to anoint with oil and offer the prayers for those who seek in the recovery?
“When I was a boy and I would see scary things in the news, my mother would say to me, “Look for the helpers. You will always find people who are helping.”–Fred Rogers
I am making a deliberate decision to focus on the helpers, the rescue workers. They are the points of light that make an intolerable situation hopeful. Every act of compassion pulls us from the darkness that seeks to overcome our souls and pull us towards the Light. In the name of those unknown, but who are the helpers – I light a candle and offer a prayer for their strength, for their needs and for their mental health.