Removed from suffering…

15 Mar

Over the last few days as I’ve been thinking about how I can really reflect on what is going on around the word without sounding trite or overly spiritual without any sense of connection.  I guess I have this hesitation and reluctance because of the enormity of the events- the earthquake and Tsunami the Japanese people have endured, the danger and tension that Libyans are experiencing.

There are plenty things in my life I guess I can say is a form of suffering so at some level I resonate. But the truth is, one does not know what it’s like to live to a earthquake and a tsunami that takes our your entire town unless you’ve lived it.  I think we tend to over-react in our emotions or are completely disconnected and I guess I don’t know how to find a healthy medium.

Many theologians and christian leaders have tried to explain or justify suffering.  There are different logics and reasoning people use- and I can follow along in the moment but can’t really retain it since I can’t even seem to give one example right now!

But I think what I keep coming back to is that I’ve witness, experienced and seen so much suffering in this world and yet I believe a Good God. A God who cares and loves this world. And yes, sometimes that might be hard to explain.

As I sit in the comfort of my living room with electricity, heat and yummy dinner, I feel really removed from suffering- whether it’s the millions of children going to bed hungry and/or cold, or people fearing for their lives or grieving the loss of a family member.

In this moment, it’s hard to say that seeing all this suffering is making me think of how grateful I am for my comforts. That just seems wrong to compare my comforts with others’ sufferings.

But I am grateful. Not because compared to others I have more, but despite the fact that I can’t really even figure out how to process all the things going on in this world and have the “perfect” Christian response to it to post of my facebook, I am accepted and I am loved.

As a lent reflection its a hard one to connect because I really don’t want to minimize the suffering of people around the globe today by trying to connect it to my suffering nor do I want to connect this sense of relief which could be interpreted as grace because I am not the one suffering.

So today’s lent reflection is going to have to just hang there in a limbo- as sort of an expression of my struggle to identify with the suffering.

I pray for mercy and grace for all those suffering around the world and that those of us who are privileged in our comfort are able to engage in responsible ways to make a small dent in the world for change. Even though I feel removed from suffering in other parts of the world, I can work hard in the world that I am connected to and try and make a small dent in whatever ways God has allowed me to.

Mother Teresa puts it all in context for us:

We ourselves feel that what we are doing is just a drop in the ocean. But the ocean would be less because of that missing drop.


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One Response to “Removed from suffering…”

  1. Margaret Yu March 16, 2011 at 3:08 am #

    love your heart…

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