Like many of you, I was heartbroken over the December shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut. As a mom pregnant with two little boys, all I could think about were those parents who went searching for their children only to find out they had been killed by a mad man. I wanted to know the names of these children. I wanted to know how to pray for these families. And my heart continued to break more and more.
One mother of the slain children wrote about the process of identifying her son. It is difficult to read, but moving as you get a glimpse of a mother's love even as she views her son's lifeless body. Her decision to come forward caused a journalist to write about how we owe it to these families to listen to their stories, even the gruesome ones. And I agree.
I wrote a post last week at Her.meneutics that ties her assertions to our responsibility as Christians to grieve with people. Here is an excerpt:
"When Lazarus died Jesus went to him even when he was warned that the smell of his dead friend's body would be overpowering (John 11:38-40). Not even a decomposing body could deter him because he knew that he had power over death. As those who trust in this Christ who has victory over death, we owe it to the grieving not to run from death but to run towards it with them, to look death in the face and walk with them in their pain. But also to acknowledge, like Jesus did, that for those who are in Christ that this death does not have the final word (John 11:4).
Not only did Jesus choose to face the death of his friend, but he willing took on flesh in order to defeat death and sin. Jesus became a human being who could die so that little ones, like Noah Pozner, would one day be whole and new—and unstained by the atrocities that ripped them from this world.
As Christians we can look at death and refuse to turn our faces away because we know the One who conquered death by his own and is coming again to make all things new (Rev. 21:5). We owe it to grieving families to enter their pain and hear their stories."
You can read the rest here.