It's taken me a couple of days to make any connection with my feelings about the mining accident in West Virginia and related events. It seemed so huge at first that I couldn't even think about it. Also, I think that my thoughts were tied up a lot with coping with illness here. Now that I have a bit of relief in the breathing department, I can stop worrying about recovery and invest the time in writing.
My feelings are not so much about the accident itself--it's a horrible, horrible thing for the families but also somewhat of a risk with the job and at one time in this country would not have been anything shocking for the rest of the country. That isn't meant to sound calloused. Every death is worth grieving, and every community grieves the deaths of those people who are part of it regardless of the cause. What makes a death horrific is how we who are alive imagine ourselves experiencing it. We might think of one death as horrific, but it is instantaneous; yet another death we thought of as peaceful might be privately horrible for the person experiencing it because it is prolonged. The mining deaths were truly horrific because the miners obviously had the time and presence of mine to plan and hope for rescue that could not come in time--and apparently one had gone for help, and he was the only one who survived. At least that is the conclusion I draw based on the fact that he was separated from the others and was still alive.
But the most horrific thing to me is the fact that news media all over the country reported falsely that all of the miners had survived--before the rescue was even completed! The repercussions of that false report are extremely serious.
Casto said the tragedy has shaken the faith of some in the community, who "don't even know if there is a Lord anymore," she said. "We had a miracle, and it was taken away from us."
I have long believed that this country's news media professionals--and I mean everyone from the reporter to the editor and especially to the supervisor monitoring the ratings--are writing their stories based more on emotional appeal than on fact and that one day this would cause some serious problem. That day is upon us. It's time for journalists to wake up and start thinking critically. In Tim Lahaye's Left Behind series, there is a scene where all the major news networks are reporting that Buck Williams, one of the main characters (who happens to be a journalist), is dead. His ID has been found at the site of an explosion. His boss wisely says, "I won't believe anything until I see a body." Of course, he has the added benefit of having received a phone call from Buck letting him know that he is alive; but how much better off we would have been as a country if we had waited to see those bodies. These news reports were based on rescue communications that apparently were misinterpreted. Those communications should have been left between rescuers, not leaked to the journalism community. Are we that eager for a story that we can't sit tight for a few hours???
Now about miracles and faith... If I could say one thing to those people... You still have a Lord. You always did. Your miracle was never taken away. What you had was man's irresponsibility, and it should never have been. But God calls you to a faith based on who He is, not on what He does. He is God, and He knows all of this: your grief, your anger, and your fear that He isn't real. He will lay His hand on your life if you will not harden your hearts toward Him because of your anger toward mankind. Turn to Him. Let Him heal you. Forgive those people who have hurt you. Vengeance is His. Let Him have His way with their hearts.
I don't know if my words could ever reach anyone who needs them, but I needed to write them. I really don't know who reads my journal--it's public on purpose. Maybe somehow the person who needs these words most will see them... *prays*