Oh Orlando, you are heavy on my heart.
On my normal Monday run I think how nothing is normal for you, citizens of Orlando. When tragedy strikes, nothing is normal and nothing is as it should be. We, as a country, are shaken again. Tears come. How can this be?
On my normal Monday run I bring you, Orlando, and you, families of the slain and injured to God. It is the only place I know to go. To God.
As I run I come across a deer in the path
Right there in front of me, plain as day
Stared me down
I slowed to take in God’s creation
In a flash she was gone
Nowhere to be seen
Into the forest I peered, I scanned
Yet I could not see her with my eyes
I knew she was there
I had just laid my eyes upon her
Oh the beauty and the majesty of God’s creation
Oh when He lets us get a glimpse of his creativity, power, and glory
It can be like that
We see it and then it’s gone
Jesus’ disciples must’ve felt like that.
Jesus was there with them, teaching them and doing miracles. In flesh and blood He spoke to them, touched them, met them in the reality of their daily lives. They saw his body, his eyes, God in human form.
Then, poof he was gone.
The faith it took to start the early church. The faith it took to believe God was still at work. The faith it took to follow someone they could no longer see with their eyes. When tragedy struck, what were they thinking? What were they feeling? They must have thought, “I just saw Him. He was just here. Now what?”
As plainly as I saw the deer on the path, they saw Jesus. When I could not see that deer through those trees, the deer was there, doing what deer do. Today we cannot see Jesus in human form, but He is here. He is at work. He loves with an endless love. He searches and rescues with persistence and strength.
For those of us who’ve experienced Jesus’ love, strength, compassion, and glory our call is to cling to our faith, believing he is here and working in the midst of the forest of evil and death and unfathomable tragedy. As Jesus longs to show compassion, we can love and serve sharing His compassion. I am thankful for those who are doing this on the ground there. He weeps right now with you, Orlando, as you are overcome with the gamut of emotions this tragedy brings. He weeps with us, as a country, as we reel with anger, helplessness, and deep sadness.