A Las Vegas mass shooting leads to shock, fear, and grief. A beautiful outdoor concert went from a time of recreation, relaxation, and reprieve from work or school to a nightmare of at least fifty-eight deaths and hundreds of injuries.
People screamed, “Get down.” Others screamed, “Stay down.” Still others got down on top of loved ones to protect them, while many ran for their lives to avoid being a victim of the mass shooting.
The police found the gunman, sixty-four-year-old Stephen Paddock, dead in his hotel room with at least ten rifles.
Meanwhile, family, friends, and coworkers who said good-bye to those who died expected to see them again if not that evening, sometime later. They may be numb from the shock of their death in a mass shooting.
Those who survived may now experience fear of crowds and flashbacks of that evening. They may wonder why they survived, but some of their family members or friends who were with them did not. They may suffer from survivor guilt and question whether they did enough to save those who were with them. They may fear they didn’t.
Fires, hurricanes, and floods have ravaged the United States. Now the largest mass shooting ever adds more grief to a heartbroken nation. How can anyone recover?
Once again, we will need to reach out to those in mourning and offer comfort. We will need to send cards, flowers, and contributions to help with transportation and funeral costs.
Those in the health care professions may offer discounted or free services to survivors. Chaplains, ministers, and rabbis will need to be available for the grieving.
2 Corinthians 1:3–4: “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”
Prayer: God, help me comfort others with the comfort I received from you. Amen.
What will you do this week to comfort the grief-stricken?
Copyright© by Yvonne Ortega X.II.MMXVII
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