I hate that we are a society that breeds and accepts violence, indifference, and suffering in various forms.
I hate that we value the wrong things and neglect the least of these.
I hate that as member of that society, I am not without fault nor am I entirely blameless in either regard.
I especially hate that, despite being deeply affected by the recent tragedy in Connecticut and having lived through a different kind of tragedy myself, I find myself on some level disturbingly numb, indifferent, jaded, and helpless in the face of evil and the pain of others.
This should not be, and we need to openly confess that we all contribute, at least in some small measure, to the darkness of a fallen world through our inaction, aggression, excess, selfishness, and apathy. In light of this, we must then repent from the wrong we unknowingly celebrate and work together to find new ways of dying to self and loving our neighbor as Christ commanded.
We value love of self over love of others,
personal gain over compassionate care,
pride over humility,
revenge over forgiveness,
leisure over service,
desire over sacrifice,
greed over charity,
self-indulgence over self-control,
policy over people,
external blame over personal responsibility,
depravity over virtue,
malice over grace,
and callousness over kindness.
Kind and merciful God, we have sinned in Your sight,
We have all wandered far from Your way;
We have followed desire, we have failed to aspire
To the virtue we ought to display.
Kind and merciful God, we’ve neglected Your Word
And the truth that would guide us aright;
We have lived in the shade of the dark we have made,
When you willed us to walk in the light.
Kind and merciful God, we have broken Your laws
And in conduct have veered from the norm;
We have dreamed of the good, but the good that we could
We have frequently failed to perform.
– Bryan Leech, “Kind and Merciful God”