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Where Was God?

Coping with the Newtown murders.

Like everyone else, I’ve been trying to cope with Friday’s tragedy. Most of the victims were just little kids trying to become big kids. Some were adults who became fatalities and teachers who became lifesavers. 

“Where was God?” I read that some people asked, while either genuinely seeking an answer or attempting to present a political position. 

I believe that we're all part of God and manifest that part of us in our everyday lives through our actions and intentions. Evil exists as a manifestation of actions and intentions by those who have lost hope. The God part becomes lost in that hopelessness. It’s an equilibrium that we may not understand, but we see or read about it every day.

When people learn to accept that, they will stop looking for answers in all the wrong places and come to realize how connected we all are to each other. 

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Dave December 17, 2012 at 05:11 PM
God is with us all the time if you accept him. He was with the victims of this horrible tragedy. And yes, he was with the poor young man who pulled the trigger. I am sure that someone will make some sort of attack on my regarding that last statement. However, I do believe it. As a community and as neighbors and friends, we need to remember that we are not in this alone and that each of us should be willing to help each other. Prayers and well wishes go a long way, regardless of your faith. But being there for each other can stop horrible things from happening.
HistorianWT December 17, 2012 at 06:37 PM
God isn't allowed in schools anymore, remember, Joseph?
Joseph Keyes December 17, 2012 at 11:15 PM
If you read my comment carefully, you would have grasped the idea that God is in everyone of us and that we are all part of God, ergo, God is most certainly in every classroom, in every school, all over the world.
Joseph Keyes December 17, 2012 at 11:20 PM
Dave, your perception the "we are not in this alone" is what I meant about us all being part of God. Prayer is a powerful instrument for joining us and for affecting change.
HistorianWT December 18, 2012 at 01:27 AM
Oh, I see. Great column, Joseph.
roger freiday December 18, 2012 at 12:53 PM
'god'' was nowhere to be seen in this tragedy neighbors. We need not try to justify or rationalize events like this to mollify the lack of ''godly'' intervention. Horrible times like this one only serve to make 'believers', scurry to justify their continued faith system. I do not think it accomplishes ANYTHING to assign this horror to any 'gods' in any shape or form. Best to leave it to conjecture than try to rationalize the lack of 'godly' intervention.
Joseph Keyes December 18, 2012 at 04:46 PM
Rodger, I wasn’t assigning any godly responsibilities in this tragedy, but rather expressing my reaction to people who were doing just that. It seems natural for people to turn to God in times of trouble looking for answers, miracles, or intervention, or to and assign responsibility to an external being. I merely pointed out that (in my opinion) we are all part of that God—like a spiritual holon, and as such affect and are affected by any other member, e.g., “Move a grain of sand and you change the order of the entire universe.”
Denobin December 19, 2012 at 03:39 PM
Joseph, You are absolutely right about our connectedness. I think one thing that the shooters in all these tragedies have in common is that they were disconnected from society by circumstance or by choice. Everyone needs to realize that we have an effect on all those we encounter, no matter how casually, and that we can make that eexperience a positive or negative one. In this season, please rememeber that none of us is truly alone and try to reach out and make every encounter a good one.
Sue Underwood December 19, 2012 at 04:47 PM
I believe God is present at all times and with all people whether they choose to acknowledge Him or not. I also believe God does not intercede like a Superman stopping such horrible events for some people and not for others. God loves all equally and wouldn't choose to help some people over others. He does not judge the worthiness of his children to be "saved". He was comforting each victim last Friday as he welcomed them with love into his care. I do not believe as some say, that God "wanted his children to come home" and that it was their time to leave earth. God doesn't want to cut our lives short but when we die God welcomes us to leave behind the earthly troubles and cares and instead absorb the new life of peacefulness, love, and comfort. He was also with the shooter, hoping the troubled young man would make a better choice - God gave us the right to make our own decisions, the gift of free will. Though there is no justification for the choice he made this troubled soul also needs to experience the love and peace that eluded him during his earthly life. What a hell is daily life must have been existing as a solitary person out of touch with the world around him, no friends, no connection, no sense of being a part of his community. A characteristic of so many of the murderers in these familiar events. Finally: Share God's love, comfort and hope with both loved ones and strangers. May God be with us all as we thank him for the gift of his son next week.
Joseph Keyes December 20, 2012 at 02:14 AM
Denobin, that alienation you refer to is both sad and ironic considering the endless means that people have to reach out to each other with today’s technologies, but there’s no substitute for a hug or genuine conversation.
Joseph Keyes December 20, 2012 at 02:36 AM
Thanks for your insights, Ms. Underwood. I grew up and was educated in the Catholic faith. I prayed to God the Father, Jesus and the Holy Ghost. I attended mass, confessed my sins, and received Holy Communion every week. I was confirmed a Soldier of Christ and was told that I would be a good priest someday. Later I learned how others viewed God. I learned about the Buddha and became a student of Zen. I watched Mother Teresa care for people and people care for each other. I am a man of faith and believe in our interconnectedness with God and our fellow beings.
Hookerman December 20, 2012 at 01:42 PM
If God never intercedes in our lives, then what's the point of prayer?
Joseph Keyes December 20, 2012 at 03:59 PM
Hookerman, interesting question. When you think about it, a lot people pray for intervention, i.e., miracles, from God. I believe the purpose of prayer is to make one’s intentions known and that that simple act has an effect on the collective consciousness that make us all part of God. Individual prayers are answered but collective prayers have a power all their own.
Paul Richartz December 21, 2012 at 02:03 PM
I believe God must be asking, "Where were you?" He gave us brains and the ability to work together (well, except politicians) and we can't stop these horrors? Where's God? I guess in heaven shaking his/her head in disgust at our failure, our human failure, to prevent this type of tragedy. If we can't accept the blame, blame God? No, whether you believe or not it's our job to fix this so it never happens again.
Hookerman December 21, 2012 at 04:26 PM
On the other hand, didn't God show us the way??? Look at all the examples of God's vengence in the old testament that led to mass deaths, such as Soddom and Gomorah and the Great Flood.
Thomas Lotito December 21, 2012 at 11:05 PM
Joe, why do some people blame God and what really connects us? Is it because our children are as vulnerable as the children in Newtown Conn.? Instead of asking where was God, it's time to humble ourselves and turn to God and pray for comfort and healing. For it is written: Deuteronomy 32:27 "The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms."
Dick Dole December 22, 2012 at 04:11 PM
Job 38 - “Who is this that obscures my plans with words without knowledge? 3 Brace yourself like a man; I will question you, and you shall answer me. 4 “Where were you when I laid the earth’s foundation? Tell me, if you understand. 5 Who marked off its dimensions? Surely you know! Who stretched a measuring line across it? 6 On what were its footings set, or who laid its cornerstone— 7 while the morning stars sang together and all the angels shouted for joy? MERRY CHRISTmas!
Joseph Keyes December 25, 2012 at 05:08 AM
Ducunt omnes viae Dei...Merry Christmas!

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