Monday, May 2, 2011


Oh how I have mixed reactions to the news of the death of Osama bin laden last night.

My first exclamation was with John as we were about to watch Masterpiece Theater and the phone sent me a news update. Interest was high enough that we changed to CNN to see if the president was talking yet. But we quickly returned to PBS, knowing that we could catch up on the news later.

As I am listening to interviews on the TV this morning, many scriptures come to mind as I am unsure on how to react to the celebration and glorification of the violence used to "bring justice." It just doesn't sit well with me spiritually. Having said that, how else does our world bring a stop to people who have power to bring death and destruction? There are NO easy answers, politically!

"Do not repay anyone evil for evil, but take thought for what is noble in the sight of all... Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good." Romans 12:17, 21. 

"Do not gloat when your enemy falls; when they stumble, do not let your heart rejoice." (Proverbs 24:17) "

'Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked,' says the Lord God, 'and not rather that they should turn from their ways and live?'" (Ezekiel 18:23).

I am absolutely sure that this is a time for personal reflection. 

Here are some of my ramblings: As I do a "moral inventory," I am struck by the relief I feel with this death that is likely to be momentary.  This is the side of me that can "celebrate" the fact that there are men and women in our armed forces that are brave enough to bring this part of our war history to a conclusion, risking their lives for what they believe to be a real threat. Perhaps I am in awe of their bravery because it is definitely NOT part of who I am. On the other hand, I abhor and fear violence, I loathe that it hurts or kills. But where is it justified? The LORD certainly used violence to teach the people of God that there is one God to worship and that they had better be faithful. Oh, it makes me so anxious to think that violence/war can be a good thing. How would I react if war came to me rather than watching it on TV?

The Peace River Spirituality Center posted this morning: Our choice to celebrate death or justice in the face of world events makes a difference. One makes us no better than a terrorist. The other brings us closer to God. It's a good day for sober reflection.  

So I call myself to a time of reflection. May Shalom prevail!

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