Running towards the heartbreak

Right now I feel like I’m in a glass bottle, set on a table in the midst of a bar where fights are breaking out in every corner.

Over in Nepal, the earth shook and mountains trembled and so many thousands were gone in an instant. Though there is aid starting to pour in, and life will go on,  it will never be the same.

Then, near my old stomping grounds, the streets of Baltimore have erupted. One life there taken, but one in a long chain of too many. People are calling for so many changes, needed changes of heart, law, police procedures, society and on and on, but I wonder if this much change is possible.

Uncomfortably close to where I sit now, several Middle Eastern countries are at war, bombing airports, intercepting ships, overthrowing governments. Terrorists in nearby countries are kidnapping and executing Christians, committing atrocities straight from hell and forcing entire people groups to abandon their countries to find refuge elsewhere. People I know are working night and day to find bad guys and broker peace, but will they?

Meanwhile, in my little life, the dinner I made tonight was pretty good. We haven’t been able to find my daughter’s FAVORITE stuffed animal for going on three nights, but we’re surviving. My toddler son throws spontaneous dance parties that crack us up, and can also throw a fit with the best of them when I can’t guess the object of his “unspoken” desires. So, you know, life is fine. It’s good. Great even. Blessed, I would say. Quiet in the immediate vicinity of my glass bottle.

But out there, it’s messy and getting messier. I see people running towards the heartbreak in every direction. I see aid workers hitting the ground in Nepal and experts spreading the word on what can help and what doesn’t. I see clergy linking arms in Baltimore, showing up with love in the midst of the pain. I see my friends down in Uganda picking up the downtrodden, providing a refuge for the weak, lifting up arms that have fallen. (Wait, did I just slip Uganda in with everything else? Yes. It’s not the headline,-anymore- but it’s a country in crisis, where names and faces are still fresh on my heart.)

My bottle is shaking, quiet and whole, but I’m not unaffected. Now it’s just a question of what I can do.

I want to be out there running, too, helping somewhere, but in here I’m just tripping over too many toy cars and princess dresses to do much out there. Oh, I know this mom place is just exactly where I’m supposed to be, but it’s because I’m a mom to kids who live in this world that I watch these corners burn with a heavy heart, bent knees and open hands. (Ok, honestly, my hands are pretty full, but I’m a mom, there’s always room for a little more!)