A Prayer for Virginia Tech

May 2007

Lord, we were all shocked and saddened on Monday, April 16, by the deadliest act the campus violence in the entire history of our country.  We expect schools to be places learning and safety.  When our expectations are violated, the impact is felt in every classroom across America.  We ask, "Where did we go wrong?"

We are ashamed that once again our country is portrayed to the world as a place of crime and violence.

We grieve for the loss of 32 students and teachers at Virginia Tech.  We grieve with those who lost loved ones.  We lift up those families and friends to you, Lord, and we ask your comfort in this time of trouble

O Lord, in such a tragedy, there is always questioning.  We ask with the psalmist: “Why standest thou afar off, O LORD?  Why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?” (10:1).  Where were you, Lord, that such a thing could happen?  But then we know Lord that we should not blame you for human sin and human evil.

And in spite of our questioning, in spite of our doubts, we have nowhere else to turn, Lord, but to you. In any time of trouble or tribulation Lord, we can only turn to you.  And there always seems to be trouble and pain and suffering in this world.  The psalmist said, “Be not far from me; for trouble is near; for there is none to help” (22:11).  Trouble is always near, Lord, and earthly help often fails us.  We can only plead, “Lord, be with us.”

For the strickened families of the victims at Virginian Tech, we say with the Psalmist, “The LORD hear thee in the day of trouble; the name of the God of Jacob defend thee” (20:1).  Be with all those who are in trouble or pain or suffering this day.  Grant them your deepest comfort, that the ache of their hearts might be soothed, that we may say again, “We will rejoice in thy salvation, and in the name of our God we will set up our banners” (5).

Lord, we admit that we have no glib answers in the face of tragedy.  We cannot say the lord wills it; we would not impute evil to you.  We do not understand why.  But we do say, “Now know I that the LORD saveth his anointed; he will hear him from his holy heaven with the saving strength of his right hand” (6).

“Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the LORD our God” (7).  Ultimately, all worldly and human intentions fail us.  Our only comfort is to “remember the name of the Lord our God.”  Amen.



If you have questions or comments, email Tony Grant

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