DEVOTION: Holocaust Remembrance Day

by Beth Bondurant

Six candles represent 6 million Jews systematically exterminated by the Nazi regime.

A two minute siren calls everyone to silence in remembrance of the worst genocide in history... with a hope that "never again" will this happen.

We mark the graves of those whom we love and lose.  We place flowers and candles... pictures and mpmentoes... words and music... soft kisses and simple reminders to give thanks for their gift of life to us.

We grieve and pray and struggle to recover our ability to keep on keeping on.  We promise to make every effort to live in a more meaningful... caring... compassionate way with others.  We want to make life better for all so that whatever problems arise, we won't resort to intolerance and retribution... to judgment and retaliation... to bitterness and despair.

"Father, forgive them for they know not what they do."

But forgiveness and mercy come at a price.

Seeing the face of God in others is not a clear alternative when horror closes our eyes.

Feeling the hand of the Master stuns our well being when devastation strikes creation.

O God... we cry out in total helplessness.  We are weak and so bereft of mercy and grace.  How could something so shocking be allowed to happen.  If goodness and mercy permeates our lives... then why.  Why is life so painful. In your grace and peace, I can ask.  I can wonder.  I can doubt.  I can fear and I know you reach out to me in love. Thank you for holding me close when I need reassurance and calm.  You are the only One I can rely on for perfect understanding and love.  Forgive me when I don't reflect this amazing grace in my life. Help me light the candles. Help me pray even when I don't have the words.  Help me regain strength... faith... hope and fill me with your love on this Holocaust remembrance day.

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