The Thing About Grace
by Aaron Seaney
Thursday night I had the pleasure of seeing the Dark Knight Rises at midnight with Rob. It was a fantastic experience and when I got home I happily wrote my review. It wasn’t until 4:30 AM that I heard what happened in Aurora. After reading the news stories in shock I started praying. Yet something was stirring deep in my spirit, God was really laying it on my heart to have Brittany pray for some reason, I took note and not wanting to wake her up went up stairs to go to bed with the plan of having her pray when I got up. Well as soon as I walk into the room Britt very alert asked “Well…how was the movie?”. Starteled I said “Good…but since your up…” Because God’s plans are bigger than my plans. So my awesome wife obviously dove right in and started praying for the victims, and the families, and just every one involved in Aurora. My heart was heavy for them and I knew God’s heart was breaking for them too. While the shootings were incredibly tragic I found my self more sad, than any other emotion, sad for the families, sad for the victims, and honestly sad for the person who could have had such a broken life, and a broken soul that they were able to do something like this. It wasn’t until Saturday that my emotions went from sad, to very very angry.
Anger came from reading an article about how Westboro Baptist Church was planning to picket the memorial service in Aurora on Sunday. The article pulled several “Tweets” from members of the church and the more I read the more I was filled with rage….I wanted to do something, I wanted to go down there and argue, and yell, get angry and honestly…..fight. Funny how the enemy exploits those little moments. Looking for every window of opportunity. It took a lot of deep breathes and a talk with my good friend Lance but finally after calming down, I could do the only thing that makes sense to me these days. I turned to God. Through praying over the last several days (because sometimes it isn’t a single prayer quick fix) God has really started showing me how he has grace and mercy for the people of Westboro. In fact God started speaking to me quite clearly about this situation. For me during prayer, as I have stated in previous blogs, there usually comes a vision when I am asking God for guidance, this time it was very verbal.
God was basically saying “do you get to decide who deserves grace? Did I not give you grace and love in the times you needed it most? If you show anger towards these people are you any different? Show them my love not your hate.” Message received! Loud and clear God! Who am I to talk about who is right and who is wrong, instead I need to be exactly what God has called me to be, an out pour of Love and Grace. So that is what I am hoping for. To continue to love people…no matter who they are. Continue to show grace…no matter what they’ve done. With this comes a simple request.
I am asking that if you read this post wherever you are you would pray for 3 things.
1. The victims and their families: They are still the top priority. What happened was awful and we need to be praying not only for healing but that God will show up in their lives and comfort them. Let us pray that they have the knowledge to understand that God gave man free will and that free will is not always used for his purpose or glory, but that he is still the almighty of love, grace, and above all in moments like these….HOPE.
2. Westboro baptist church: I think the whole nation needs to pray for this Church. I want to see God’s out pouring of love all over those people so that they understand who God is and what he is about. I would pray that they will be so overcome with that love that they start repairing bridges they burned, and start healing wounds that they themselves caused. I would also pray that any wounds opened up through their actions on their end would also be healed, so that God’s glory can truly start to shine through.
3. This one is really hard for me to type…and my stomach turns as the words come out. Pray for the shooter. As I said earlier in this blog we don’t get to choose who deserves grace. It is time I start practicing what I preach, and I believe this man needs to know God. I don’t know what got him to the dark place he was at, but I pray God will show his light. The number 1 comment I hear is “I hope that guy gets what he deserves.” I pray that you and I don’t get what we deserve…so I can’t pray for anything else for him.
I may have lost some readers on this one. I’m sorry if you are hurt or offended by it. That is not my intention. But I did say this was a place to come and discuss things so if you absolutely disagree that is ok. Please let me know in the comments below. I will ask one thing though….keep it respectful, hateful comments won’t be approved and will not show up here. I am all for healthy discussion as long as that’s what it is. Also if you wish to leave prayers for any of the above 3 in the comments that would be really great. I believe if we can band together and pray as a body of Christ we would have a much larger impact and it opens it up to see what God is leading others to pray for.