I will hear what God proclaims;
for he proclaims peace.
Though I can become as bothered as the best of them regarding life on this earth, my normal response to trauma is precise calm. I do what needs to be done at the moment and collapse afterward. It is then that I realize just how devastating the circumstances I encountered might have been. It is then that I am also grateful that I did something.
Perhaps this propensity to respond comes from my mother’s example. She responded to violence around her without concern for herself. Her priority was to keep her fellow human from being hurt. She yelled at a man who was bothering a woman on a bus; he ran off at the next stop. She chased the assailant who mugged my aunt in our hallway; he fled before doing irreparable harm. Though I have not been faced with equally dramatic scenarios, my mom’s lessons have compelled me to respond to others who are in danger just the same.
I don’t think my mom was any braver than the rest of us. I do think that she had great faith in doing the right thing and in the God who promises to be with us in our efforts. Though my mom’s interventions were not necessarily peaceful as they unfolded, they brought unmistakable peace to those she assisted. Being a herald of God’s peace sometimes takes us to uncomfortable places.
God of Mercy and Peace, though none of us can change this world on our own, each of us can do something to improve the turf on which we walk. Give us the wisdom to know what to do and the courage to do it.
©2014 Mary Penich – All Rights Reserved