Yesterday I had to take a break. Had to “unplug”.

Watching all of the news footage I began feeling anxious and useless to do anything about anything. Made me feel the same kind of sick I felt several months ago while watching the events unfold in Connecticut. It led me to pray. Eventually, turning it off and taking a step back.
Mindful that at least for today, tragedy isn’t knocking on my door. I feel guilty for being so grateful.

Later, while waiting for the kids swim lessons to start, I was scrolling through my news feed on Facebook. I came across a picture of what I’m assuming was a picture someone posted on Instagram. The picture was of a very large woman. Sitting in a classroom or meeting of some sort. Her face had been blurred and she was completely unaware of the picture that had been taken of her. Beneath it were vicious comments about how funny this or that was…funny because she was so fat.

“Look at those rolls! Good Lord, you could lose all your stuff in there.”

This is my fear. I can hear the things little kids say about me when I’m out and about. Before they learn that they should keep their observations to themselves. I pretend I don’t hear. I can also anticipate that maybe some clever teenager might think its funny to take MY picture and post it up online to laugh at. I’m always joking that I’m pretty positive someone has put me on the “people of Walmart ” website.

In all of this ugliness there is beauty. I have to believe this. I must believe this.

Beyond the fear of newscasts and online mockery. Beyond my view of the world or even the view of myself…there is hope. There is love.

The good that weaves us all together.

The vibration of hope that pulls deep within us when we are moved by seeing kindness and selflessness in others. That feeling we get when watching a movie where the characters are victorious. We feel it swell up and clench us. It’s the same feeling, magnified, as we watch the stories unfold out of the ugliness of yesterday. Be it a bombing or the terrorizing of a woman’s worth from a picture. The pure humanity in people who throw themselves into defending and helping. Serving others. Carrying the burden together. The horror together. The hope together.

No matter our stance on faith, we can all see God at work despite the evil and vile. God in the arms of those wrapping blankets around the scared or injured. God in the strength of someone taking leadership in a terrifying moment. God in the hands of people simply serving juice and water. God offering comfort through hugs and embraces. God in the hearts of the rest of us who are praying and hurting for all of those entangled. God even in the fingers of those typing to defend and honor that heavy woman who had become a joke online. THIS is what we ought to be marinating in. That is what should be reported.

God is LOVE and he is EVERYWHERE.

We just have to look for Him.

“Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”