The reports pour in. They are always so confusing amidst chaos and disaster. Numbers fly but we know they don’t mean anything, not yet. One thing is for sure. Something awful has happened. Terrorist attack, madman, political activist. We don’t know. But there are injuries and there are casualties.
In the ashes of disaster and chaos and evil, something inevitably occurs. The beauty of good rises, the beauty of Him. Long before the "why" can be answered, Who is moving swiftly through. At the hands of a few, evil strikes. And at the response of thousands, God weaves a brighter, richer, more telling tale of His love and redemption.
Only a handful are bent on destroying but the majority rise up to help their neighbor.
Countless first responders descend on the scene. Bomb squad is first. Their mission? To be the front line, protecting civilians from harm. They stand between the public and further catastrophy. And they search every trash can, every unclaimed bag, every corner of every alleyway for any further danger. And they don't stop there. If they find something, they pick it up and remove it to a safe place for a controlled detonation.
Fire and rescue crews disperse and take control of an uncontrollable situation. It’s what they know, what they have been trained for, what they signed up to do. It was a decision they made long before disaster struck – to be right here among the bleeding and wounded. They can look past the horror to see the lives that need saving. They sort through the mess to gather the living, the ones that can be saved.
City police are there too. Blocking roads and locking down the crowd to find the perpetrator(s) and acting in a myriad of other capacities that we really probably have no idea. They are the gap fillers. Whatever is needed beyond physically treating wounds and dismantling bombs, the men and women in blue are there. Tactical training and command centers at the ready.
And then there are just your average citizens. Spectators on the streets scooping up children and tending to victims and chasing down medical attention and wrapping arms around the broken. Runners who ran 26.2 miles only to cross the finish and keep on running to the hospital to donate blood. I can’t even imagine the ways the average citizen is rising up on the streets of Boston today. Untrained and unskilled but compelled to act for the greater good.
And we’re only nine hours in. There are stories yet to be told, miracles yet to be heard, beauty yet to rise. Long after evil retreats to the shadows, goodness is still shining bright, outpacing the dark, fueled by love. And Love always wins. Always.
Father, let faith arise on the streets of Boston. Let Love overtake the darkness. May you bring glory to your name. So many will turn to you in anger, will curse your name, will ask so many questions, will stand in disbelief. Lord, help me to remember that you do not need me to defend your reputation. Help me remember you are working in the midst of it all. Lord, your word promises that you are near the brokenhearted and that you save those crushed in spirit. I claim those promises now for the victims and their families. Be so near to them, Lord. So near. Lord, thank you for the first responders and for the average citizens and for everyone you will work through in your own perfect timing. You are good. You are love. And I trust in your name alone. In Jesus' name. Amen.