Today I mourn with the world. With the families in Chenpeng Village, China and in Newtown, Connecticut, as well as Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq, Gaza, and wherever violence has replaced love.
While writing, I imagined the tune from the traditional Scottish/American song “Black is the Color (of My True Love’s Hair)“. The lyrics are inspired in part by the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. below.
“The ultimate weakness of violence is that it is a descending spiral,
begetting the very thing it seeks to destroy.
Instead of diminishing evil, it multiplies it.
Through violence you may murder the liar,
but you cannot murder the lie, nor establish the truth.
Through violence you may murder the hater,
but you do not murder hate.In fact, violence merely increases hate.
So it goes.
Returning violence for violence multiplies violence,
adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars.
Darkness cannot drive out darkness:
only light can do that.
Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that.”– Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Outraged and Frightened, Sickened with Grief
Outraged and frightened, sickened with grief
We struggle for truth midst our unbelief.
When innocents suffer in this world of woe,
It seems that violence is all we know.
Tear-streaked faces held by little hands
Are trying in vain to understand
How tragedy happens to the smallest ones.
How will we answer for what’s been done?
For darkness leads into shadowed lands.
It’s only with light that we can withstand,
The cycle of hatred, from our world dispel,
Allowing love within us to dwell.
We look to God in our time of need.
We long for the Spirit to intercede.
We pray for the children, for healing and grace.
For love and peace their fears replace.
Text: Copyright © 2012 by David Wood. All rights reserved.
Permission is given for duplication and use within worship settings and community gatherings.
Dedicated to the victims of violence worldwide on December 14, 2012