When Will the Hurting Stop

It's been a tough going here in the United States. There was the murder of 9 people in a Bible study, and they were killed by a young man who grew up in Bible studies. The act is beyond explanation and understanding, maybe it's to early. Right now, we need time to grieve. The attention has shifted from a murder to a flag. Some find the flag a symbol of repression and violence while others find the flag a symbol of a special heritage. We're still hurting from various encounter...s between police and black America, which make the murders and the flag issues all the more sensitive. As a Christian, God requires- not requests- of me to look beyond myself and consider, "the other". To look beyond my ego, my needs, my understanding of the world and to consider- "the other". Jesus looked beyond himself and saw the world of the Samaritan, of the woman caught in adultery, of those possessed and unclean. He ate with them, he touched them, he gave them a sense of dignity. Maybe I should hear the stories of Black America before I offer an opinion, maybe I should hear the story of the heritage represented by a flag before I offer commentary, maybe I should spend more time in prayer for hurting and confused people; then maybe I should pray for myself; that I listen intently, that I speak carefully, that I judge others in a way that I would want to be judged.