On the Shelf:
You Are Not Alone
By Ian McKnight
A year ago, my grandfather, Steve Tuttle, passed away; I was not prepared for the year that would follow his death… You see, I’ve lost so many people in the last year that I’ve begun to lose track. And at times, I’ve thought that it may be too much for me to handle, that I’m not strong enough. But then I remember my past, and I remember that God has prepared me for these things; He forged me in fire.
In the United Methodist Church, we “recognize and celebrate All Saints’ Day (Nov. 1) and “all the saints who from their labors rest.” All Saints’ Day is a time to remember Christians of every time and place, honoring those who lived faithfully and share their faith with us.” (www.umc.org)
So on All Saints Day, I remember those that I’ve lost in the last year; my grandfather, Steve Tuttle; my grandmother, Sharon McKnight; a dear friend, Flora Gillette; my cousin, Eric McGauvran; and another friend, Howard Knickerbocker. To say I am grieving would be to put things lightly; I am numb.
I am surrounded by darkness, but it is times like these that I must remember Psalm 23:4; “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me…” God is always with us… always…
As I prepare myself for Howard’s memorial service, I think about the countless others who are grieving today. I think about the tragic deaths due to gun violence… the tragic PREVENTABLE deaths… We have the power to end this. Isn’t there enough grief in our world? These preventable deaths HAVE TO STOP. When will we realize that we have the power to end gun violence in our communities? When will enough be enough?
So today, I ask that you pray with me – pray for me. Pray for my family; pray for all of those we have all lost in the last year; pray to end gun violence; and pray to end the madness.
Beyond the Broken Heart (K1010)
Beyond the Broken Heart is an eight-week support and ministry program for anyone who is grieving the loss of a loved one. Author Julie Yarbrough combines her personal experience of grief with a deep love of Scripture and years of leading grief support groups to create and authentic and deeply personal program.
Trigger: the Ripple Effect of Gun Violence (D5941)
In the United States, more than 30,000 people are killed every year by gun violence; more are wounded. The disaster caused by gun violence is seen in almost every community. We may hear briefly about the victims and survivors of these shootings, but what happens after the media attention moves on and the wider public becomes numb to “just another shooting”?
Drawing upon conversations with lawmakers, emergency room chaplains and surgeons, survivors and victims’ families, former ATF officials, police officers, community leaders and others, TRIGGER: The Ripple Effect of Gun Violence shares the story of how gun violence impacts individuals and communities and examines the “ripple effect” that one shooting has on a survivor, a family, a community and a society.
TRIGGER also addresses the critical issue of gun violence prevention by moving the conversation away from the polarizing extremes that have long dominated the debate and lifting up the voice and experiences of those who seek common ground and a new way forward.