When Tragedy Strikes, Remember Who You Are

Whether we are reacting to the headlines out of Boston or dealing with personal tragedies, it is easy to forget who we are when we go through difficult times. Instead of thinking and acting like the sons and daughters of God that we are, we can become petty, spiteful, isolating, self-pitying and even vengeful.

It was this impulse Pope Francis was challenging when he reminded all of us in his message to the people of Boston to “resolve to not be overcome by evil, but to combat evil by doing good.”

I’d like us all to reflect on that message today.  What good can you do for the people around you?  I would like to ask that, as a way of honoring the victims and families affected by the Boston bombings, that we offer up acts of charity and kindness in their honor.  These acts don’t have to be epic.  Hold the door for someone carrying a load of packages.  Let someone else take the parking space closer to the grocery store entrance.  Call up a friend to say you were thinking of them.  Take over a chore that isn’t usually yours.  As you do these things and more, offer up a brief prayer, perhaps something like, “I offer up this act of charity as my way of combatting evil by doing good.  Lord, please multiply my efforts as you multiplied the loaves and fishes that your peace may reign.”

Channel the anger, pain, and anguish you feel into works that rob Satan of the victory.  Remember who you are and proclaim God’s grace through the choices you make today and everyday.

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