A Really Bad Day

The past few weeks (months and possibly even years, for some) have been pretty bad. Israel and Palestine continue to fight in Gaza. Many of the Nigerian girls who were kidnapped in April by an Islamic Extremist group remain captured, and some of their loved ones have died waiting for them to return. Another Malaysian Airlines flight has crashed — this one in war-torn Ukraine.

It is hard to imagine that all these terrible things are happening, but as Paul Raushenbush, The Huffington Post’s religion editor, writes, “this is not ‘happening to us.’”

In a time when violence and death happen every day, it is easy to become desensitized and detached. People in more fortunate places, removed from the horrors of the world, may think that those involved are the only ones responsible, or that there is nothing to do to stop the atrocities. However, all of the violence and death and harm done to innocent people is caused and done by humans: not some external power or some chance occurrence. Since it is we who are doing the harm, it is also we who must stop it. That may not mean travelling to Nigeria and seeking out the missing girls, but it does mean making peace a priority.

Share Raushenbush’s article with young adults and talk about how to live peacefully in a world riddled with violence:

  • Pray for the victims of these acts of hatred and anger, and also pray that those who commit these crimes see the error in their ways and find a way to stop.
  • What are some ways that you can contribute to peace and awareness in your own community? At home, at work, at church?
  • Have you ever advocated for peace? If so, how did you do it? How can you continue to do it?
  • What are the steps you will take this week to make a way for peace in your life and in the world?