This past Monday, Americans woke up to a routine Monday morning.  That night, we went to bed with saddened hearts.  What began as a beautiful day in Boston, Massachusetts ended with a horrifying scene as loved ones tried to come to terms with what happened toward the end of the Boston Marathon.  Three innocent lives were lost in this attack and nearly two hundred individuals were injured.  Yesterday, an explosion caused mass destruction, causalities, and injuries in West, Texas.  In both of these tragedies, an infinite number of people have suffered emotional trauma that is utterly beyond comprehension.  My heart is saddened, just thinking of the coming days ahead as they gradually begin to pick up the pieces of their lives.  Still, I want to speak specifically to everyone in Boston and West and the surrounding areas.  Even though it may seem like a hopeless situation at the moment, you are going to make it.  While your lives have been turned upside down, you will find a new normal and life will go on.  With God on your side, you will persevere!

Tragedies like this one cause us to ask, “Why?”  Why should children’s lives be taken so suddenly?  Why should people have to endure such destruction and loss?  Why should a seemingly safe place quickly turn into a danger zone?  While I wish I had all of the answers, I certainly have no answers to many of the questions that are being asked.  I cannot comprehend why someone would want to cause any type of destruction, much less have a desire to harm another human being.  And there are no words to explain the feeling of helplessness I am sure is felt by many in Texas as they try to determine the cause of this horrific explosion.

While I do not have all of the answers, I want to encourage each and every one of you today.  Jesus Christ says, “In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world” (John 16:33).  When He was walking upon the earth, He encountered unimaginable trouble.  He was beaten and bruised and put to death on a cross.  But God had Him in the Shelter of His arms and now He reigns victorious.  Jesus knew that we would also encounter trouble in this world.  But He reassures us that everything will be alright.  Although there will be days when we don’t feel we can put one foot in front of the other, He will be with us every step of the way.  Why?  The answer is simple.  Jesus Christ has overcome the world.

Perhaps you are facing a battle of your own today.  You may be sitting by the bedside of a loved one who is terminally ill.  Maybe you just received news that you have been let go from your place of employment.  Or you may have been personally touched in some way by the tragedies in Massachusetts and Texas.  The Lord says to you and me, “Be strong and courageous.  Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go” (Joshua 1:9).  No matter what you are going through, Jesus is right there with you.  He will hold your hand.  He will walk with you every step of the way.  He will never leave you.  Even amid the questions that surround us, Jesus Christ is the answer for the world today.  Rest in Him.  Trust in Him.  He loves you more than you could ever imagine.  With Jesus Christ as our Lord, Savior, and Friend, we will persevere!

In Christ’s Love,