This morning I looked at the online news coverage of what's happening in Japan. I was struck by one photo of a father holding his son's hand; their backs were to the camera, as the two looked out on the utter wreckage of what had been their neighborhood. And a cry rose up within me: WHY? I shook my fist at God, and was very sad and thoughtful for a while.
Then I thought at least I could say a prayer for that boy, and another one for his father. So I did.
And then I thought I could go back through the photos on the news web site, and say a prayer for each of the people I saw. So I did.
My brain gets stupid when I'm upset, so when I'm unfocused I revert to the prayer that Jesus taught, the one folks call the Lord's Prayer. My brain can stay on track with that. If it doesn't, it's easy to pick up where I left off, or start again. I can say it many times, and it doesn't lose meaning.
A while later I thought about how many people have died (I think the estimate now is 1500), and I thought that each one of those people has a mother or father or a child somewhere, who also needs prayers.
But praying for all those people one person at a time would take a very long time. Probably as long as it takes to clean up from the tsunami.
And I thought, I don't have that much stamina. My heart isn't that big. Sadly, that's true.
And then I thought, But even a tsunami is made up of drops of water. And I'm not the only one who can contribute to a wave of prayer.
So I'm putting it out there for you. The people of Japan are going to be suffering for days and months and years. Get out your wallet and contribute to whatever relief organization you prefer. Then choose a number of people to pray for, any number. Choose a length of time, however long you think you can sustain it. Get started. Keep going. Steal this post, and pass it on.