There are no words to describe what is happening in Iraq right now at the hand of Isis. I don’t know how to wrap my head around the fact that this is actually happening. Kiddos beheaded. Women taken as slaves. Men made to watch as their entire family is slaughtered.
These were my thoughts as I first began to learn about this impossibly horrible situation.
And then, today, I saw this article (warning: VERY graphic and disturbing images): http://www.catholic.org/news/international/middle_east/story.php?id=56481#.U-dfEt-Cyww.facebook
I should have never looked at that article. At those pictures. At least that is what I thought as I went to church this morning.
But, as I led worship this morning, because of this article, the songs just took on a different flavor.
When I feel afraid, think I’ve lost my way, still, You’re there right beside me. And nothing will I fear, as long as You are near; please be near me to the end! (Thy Word)
Please be near me to the end.
I’m the woman who lost her husband to cancer this week but bravely showed up to church this morning to worship You through the pain. Lord, please be near me.
I’m the man who only gets to see my kids every other weekend…and it kills me to sit in this pew alone on those weekends. Lord, please be near me.
My little girl was just beheaded because I would not deny Christ and I don’t think I can go on. Lord, please be near me.
“Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” James 1:2-4 (NIV)