Yesterday, a horrific tragedy took place at the Boston Marathon. Two deadly bombs exploded near the finish line, killing three individuals, including an 8-year-old boy. CNN reports that more than 170 patients are being treated at local hospitals for wounds, including at least 17 in critical condition and 25 others in serious condition. At least eight of the injured are children. With 27,000 runners and an estimated 500,000 spectators, the Boston Marathon quickly turned from celebration to chaos and shock.
Please join us in praying for the families of the victims, the many visitors and runners from around the world, and the entire community of Boston during this confusing and desperate time. According to a recent news report, police are “recommending to people that they stay home … and that they don’t go anyplace and congregate in large crowds.” Relatives are missing. Spectators are in shock. Law enforcement officials and first responders are working overtime. It is a dark day for Boston, and yet we know that God is with us in the midst of unspeakable grief and loss.
Over the next few days, take time to draw your family in close, set aside whatever else you are doing and pray for Boston, including:
- Safety for the over half million individuals in Boston right now for the Marathon, as well as the city’s residents
- Peace, comfort, and support for family and friends of the victims
- God’s mercy and healing on injured runners, some with amputations, who are facing surgeries, permanent damage, and significant recovery time
- Strength for doctors, nurses, and medical personnel who are working overtime to treat the injured
- Wisdom and insight for law enforcement officials and government investigators who are seeking to secure the city and uncover the perpetrators of this crime
- Support and comfort for first responders and spectators who witnessed graphic violence and may experience psychological after-affects
When a crisis like this hits, we are quickly reminded of the evil and depravity in our world and of just how fragile life is. Around the dinner table, there will be many conversations about why tragedies like this happen. In such moments, children need adults who are attuned to their emotions and tender to their needs. It’s critical that we don’t obsess over events like this, and stay glued to the TV; however, we cannot ignore this either.
Our children are not immune to the darkness and brokenness of our world. We may think that if we don’t say anything, our kids won’t know about it or feel the impact. Nothing could be further from the truth! Our kids need parents and teachers—those who have influence in their lives—to be emotionally present and invested, especially in moments like these. Talk to your kids about this tragedy—using age-appropriate terms—and then get down on your knees as a family a pray. Encourage your own children to pray for the kids and families who have been affected.
#prayforboston is the top trending topic right now on Twitter. Let’s take it beyond just a social media status and fervently “approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in our time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).