I have written about it before but I feel like it is very fitting this week…
We, as humans, are quick to judge. Despite God’s warnings that we should not be judgemental of others, we judge. I have heard many times since Michael died, people wishing death upon the person that ended Michael’s life. They declared he had to be a bad person because of who he was fighting for. Or they spew in difference towards the families and children who our troops are helping. I don’t deny that the man who shot my husband was probably bad, considering the situation, but it is not in my right to wish him ill or dead. It may not be understood by many, but I could not wish the same thing as others. Most often I allow people to say what they think and feel and respond with a nod of the head, because I understand that their hearts are different from my heart. Death is painful. Especially when you, as a loved one, holds the knowledge that someone purposely ended the life of someone who you held dear. Just as Michael was peering through his sniper scope at the enemy he was defending himself and his team from, the enemy was doing the same. Just as Michael had a family worried and waiting on him, I am sure the enemy sniper that pulled the trigger did as well. I said did because several members of the team have told me about how they went out as a group to avenge Michael’s death. It is highly likely that the man who ended Michael’s life is no longer living, if he is, then others are not. Despite who they are I cannot rejoice in that knowledge. In fact, when I found out this vengeance mission occurred and the likely number of additional people who were dead, I excused myself from the room so that I could go into my room and cry and pray for the women and children that were also feeling my pain. Like I said, I don’t expect anyone else to understand me, or why I feel that way, but this is my heart, so I will not make excuses for it.
Other women that I haven’t known, and that I have known here in Jacksonville, have unfortunately been through the same thing that I have been. Every DOD release has brought me to tears. Every time I learn of children left behind, it wrecks me deep within. If me, going through my worst day (and initial weeks) everyday for the rest of my life, would have spared each of these families the grief of losing their loved one, then I would endure it. I say that mostly because all of the Widows that I know not only have endured losing their husbands, but they have also endured intense scrutiny and judgment after the fact. People are cruel. I know that several people have made me feel like I have no right to love again. I have actually been told that I am dishonoring Michael’s memory by moving on with another Marine. Especially one acquainted with Mike and my situation. I could go on and on about the things people say, but mostly, people have been downright crappy. In fact, they feel some snobby right to my decisions and a few have even made me feel like my personal life should be public and made known to them at all times. That is just not the way that I am. Never was before, never will be…
The point is, judgment and harsh words does not behoove anyone. It hurts my heart to know and hear what people think and say. I have spent a lot of time spilling tears over the cruelty of others. So, regardless of who someone is, or what is believed they have done, I don’t think that spewing harsh, judgmental words is okay. We never know who has cried out to God and has been forgiven. It is not necessary for people to confess their sins to each other…only god himself. I said it earlier this week, but we have to understand that God’s hand is over every situation. At least that is my belief. And the vitriol that some people approach others with is downright disturbing. God is more black and white than we are. Our decisions and ideals are full of many colors.
Luke 18: 9-14
The Parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector
9 To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable: 10 “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. 11 The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people—robbers, evildoers, adulterers—or even like this tax collector. 12 I fast twice a week and give a tenth of all I get.’
13 “But the tax collector stood at a distance. He would not even look up to heaven, but beat his breast and said, ‘God, have mercy on me, a sinner.’
14 “I tell you that this man, rather than the other, went home justified before God. For all those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.”