gratitude + grief

Tonight I sit in bed, wrapped up in my officer’s old academy sweatshirt, and begin winding down with some tea and plans to watch tv. I glance down at my mug and the word embezzled on the side. Thankful. After the tragedy in Honolulu today-and lately what seems like daily tragedies of some sort or another-it seems an odd word to be focusing on. My heart sinks as I think of the sweet souls we lost today. Their families. Their department. Their neighborhood. Their island.

Tragedy always hits a little bit deeper when we have connections to it. I used to live in Hawaii-I used to jog down those very Diamond Head streets-but it’s not just those ties that pain my heart tonight. All too often we read the headlines and hear the news of officers down. Sometimes the news is local. Sometimes it’s across the country. But every time it’s close to home, because every time it’s involving our family. Blue family.

And that’s what I’m so thankful for. I’m thankful that there’s still brave people out there that choose to pin a badge on their chest each shift, knowing that it could very well be a target. I’m thankful that there’s selfless families who kiss their officers goodbye each shift, knowing that it could be the last. I’m thankful for the bond that the thin blue line stands for, the invisible string that ties us all together. I’m thankful for all first responders, all military members, and all good samaritans and helpers. I’m thankful for God’s grace. His favor. His mercy. His love.

As I look down at my mug, hours after reading about the latest blue tragedy, and moments after sending my own officer out into the darkness, I let myself feel the feels. Overwhelming grief, for our broken world and lost lives-but also overwhelming gratitude for those who live out their call to “send me” 💙

“Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?” And I said, “Here am I. Send me!” [Isaiah 6:8]

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