No parent wants to lose a child. It is a nightmare we all hope we never have to live through. When tragedy strikes, our hearts break, and we weep with those who weep. There are no words that can turn back time to the minutes before. There is no comfort that can ease the ‘what ifs.’ There are no answers to the ‘whys.’ It is all so very incomprehensible and unexplainable. These are the time defining moments in life which forever mark our days, as before and after.
Our community is reeling from the loss of Easton Cain. A freak accident in a parking lot…how does this even happen? A mom going about her normal day of grocery shopping ends up with her 3-year-old son dead, because of a drunk driver? It is the stuff of nightmares. Nothing that can be said or done can ever change the outcome of this tragic event. For them there will always be a before-Easton-died life, and an after. The hole in the family, and in the community is gaping…an open wound which is deep and painful. Grief rises up and takes hold of our hearts and squeezes them breathless. Tears overflow our eyes and slide down our cheeks. Even our attempted prayers seem hollow in light of the overwhelming pain we feel for this family. We want to help, but we know we cannot do anything but stand by to hold space and allow them their grief.
In these days, we grapple with our faith. Questions of God’s goodness are on parade in our minds. We dare not speak them, but we wonder and wrestle. We wail and we wish that terrible things like this never happened. Some shake fists at God, and others point fingers at men. Some cry out to authorities, and others bow their knees to pray. Every person reacts differently, but hopefully, no matter what our personal response, we will all surround those affected with love and care…and prayer.
We do not know what to say. We do not know how to deal with the horror that this event brings. We only know to ask for your grace and mercy. Please be with the families affected, for this is tragic on all sides. Holy Spirit bring your comfort to those who grieve. Hold them up. Give them supernatural strength. You are near to the brokenhearted, so we know that you are close in this situation because hearts are shattered. Pick up the pieces Lord. Gather them in your hand and pour your healing power into them.
We look for good in bad situations, but sometimes it seems there is none. This is one of those times. We do not understand Lord. Help us not to resort to clichés, and empty words in an effort to explain this away. There are no words. Help us to hold tight to your hand and to know that you will always be beside us in times of pain, even in unexplainable circumstances.
Guide the authorities in their investigation. Be with the healthcare workers who were at the scene. Surround the witnesses with your presence. Bring peace that passes understanding. Give us your heart. Help us to feel compassion and to be sensitive to those involved. Pour out your healing on our community. Fill us with your grace that is kind, caring, and nurturing in hard places. We ask for your light to shine in the darkness. For you to somehow be made known in hearts and minds, in ways that show your deep love for this family in their loss.
Grace. Peace. Hope. Compassion. Comfort. We ask for all these in the name of Jesus. Amen.