By Chastity Harris
In the last five months, the people of this nation have been tested and tormented.
Terrorists have brought fear and destruction. Evil posing as a troubled youth brought heart break to a small town school. Now a natural disaster has rocked the heartland.
This is not a particularly strong time for our country. The economy is pour, jobs are scarce and morale is low.
What is something that shines in these dark times? The human spirit. The decency and kindness that stops people in their tracks in the face of a tragedy, if for nothing else but to hurt with those who are hurting.
That spirit is what drives volunteers and emergency workers to ease suffering and work through the night to do all they can. It's what encourages children to send drawings to the wounded and adults to send checks. Because there is an outpouring of helping hands, I have hope for the human condition.
As long as we care more about easing the suffering of others than our own petty inconveniences, there is hope for this world as a whole.
If you are a thousand miles from a disaster and have no funds or supplies to donate, why not keep victims in your prayers? If you are a non-believer, then you could keep them in your thoughts, if you prefer. What harm is there in thinking kind, sympathetic thoughts?
Is that not offering a kindness?
There has been some criticism, following the tornadoes in Oklahoma, scorning the offering of prayers as a way to support the victims. Some of the discussion has turned quite nasty.
Instead of real help, we cling to our antiquated religion, praying for the effects of God's work to be un-done.
No. I cling to the principle that most people are good and decent. That the human spirit will reach out to one another in times of need and lift each other up. I cling to the fact that most people will feel and empathize and send out hopeful thoughts for those in Oklahoma, Boston and Newtown. That they will wish for comfort and relief for the victims and the safety of all involved. I do it in prayer to my God. You do it anyway you see fit.
What I cannot wrap my head around is the wasted efforts and breath of tearing down people who are trying to offer hope. Why take the time to spill such hatred when there is so much suffering happening right now? Of all the things you could be doing with your time, why belittle those who are offering kindness and encouraging others to do the same?
The world suffers enough. You don't need to add any extra hatred or pain to it. I'm sure there are many who could use donations of your time and money. Maybe, you could start with a kind thought.
I'll offer one on your behalf, with those I send out for Oklahoma tonight.
I don't apologize for my belief in God and you shouldn't apologize for your beliefs, but this is not the conversation we should be having right now. Find a positive way to help, any way to help.
Do you want to be the person bringing hope or hatred in this time of suffering?