I have not been able to wrap my head around the horrific shootings last week in Charleston. I feel the need to write of it here, to have something to offer you that brings perspective or clarity or some teeny, tiny speck of comfort. But whatever that might be, it surely hasn’t come.
Like you, my friend, I feel soul-crushing loss for the victims and their families. The horror they faced after extending open arms of love is more than I can take. I can’t go there, can’t hold the thought long enough for it to settle, can’t let myself feel–deep down and real–the terror such evil can manifest.
And still it is a reality I must face.
I am a South Carolinian, you see. The young shooter is from my hometown. And every time I read the heartfelt sentiment #prayforcharleston what occurs to me is I wish it were #prayforsouthcarolina. For we are all in this together, we South Carolinians, citizens who must not rest until the lawmakers we elected hear our cry to take down that flag–and actually vote to do it.
Yes, over the decades there have been a thousand points of view in the arguments about that flag and its proper place in our country’s unchangeable history. But one thing is sure. At 9:00 pm on June 17, 2015, South Carolina’s confederate flag came to represent a hatred we can neither tolerate nor perpetuate.
We are the family that love built. We have no room for hating.
This I do know. We are in this together: the strong, forgiving families who’ve already shown us the way; the holy AME church and its faithful worshipers; the beautiful, historic city of Charleston; all of us who call South Carolina home and who know its genuine, generous heart.
Hatred cannot win. Let’s choose love.
Get it down.
*It’s Our Goliath I owe this title to Dr. Mike Bragan, minister at Providence Presbyterian Church, who today delivered a sermon I will never forget. Thank you, Dr. Mike.
Just popping by to say I hear your tears. Hatred is so caustic and acidic. But love through anger and tears can win. Peace, Cathy.
Love, love this: “God’s presence doesn’t remove the storm. It removes the fear.” So simple, yet so profound. I have to share it.
Thank you Cathy, I agree, we must take the flag down!! We had a wonderful sermon Sunday addressing the horrible act of hate. Now it’s time for healing.
Thank you, Cathy.
Our lawmakers must be willing to lose a few radical votes and have the courage to act on this now. It must come down. It must be done. Sounds like your Dr. Mike is someone we’d like. I see a visit to your church in the future.
Vicki–I hope, hope, hope you will visit Providence. Yes! Mike’s powerful sermon focused on the question: “Where is God in all this?” In it he reminded us of two things. 1) God has given us Free Will. 2) God was/is right there in the AME church–it is His house after all. “God’s presence doesn’t remove the storm. It removes the fear,” he said. (Mark 4:35-41)
Courageously and beautifully articulated.
Thank you, Tim. It has been a difficult week here in South Carolina.
Yes thank you Dr. Mike…and amen my sister-friend.
My heavens, yes. Thank you dear friend!
Yes, Cathy! Beautifully written as only you can do.
Thank you, Melissa! I know you feel as I do and I thank you for your sweet comment. Onward!!!!
AMEN! You need to get yourself back to your home state of SC, my friend. WE NEED YOU.