November 1​7, 2015 – From Sr. ​Mary Pat Cook

November 17, 2015 | Posted in For Contemplation

I came so that they might have life and have it more abundantly. (to the full, til it overflows) John 10:10 Over these past few days – and weeks – we have been filled abundantly with images of Paris, Syria, the streets of Cleveland … and if we look deep enough there are similar images of Beirut, South Sudan, the deserts of our border states of Texas, New Mexico, Arizona. What seems to be overflowing is not life, but violent death. Where is our God of abundant Life? In one of her songs, Jan Novotka voices God’s response: “I’m right here in the pain. … Abundant Love is flowing there.” Difficult to believe. One national news interview was with a young man who lived near the restaurants targeted in the Paris violence. He said he was not a doctor or health care professional. He couldn’t fix anything or anyone. But he felt a responsibility to be there. He sat with individual victims, just holding them, touching them, letting them know they were not alone … just being there. God right there in the pain … Abundant Love flowing there. Sometimes our experience of God is that … of just being there, of holding the evil and the pain in love. NOTE: For another reflection on these recent news events, visit for Jan Richardson’s Blessing in a Time of Violence .

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