This was written after taking a walking tour of Antietam in February. It is a sobering, thought-provoking place and it took me a while to process it…
We walked along the fences
the ones that bordered the fields of Antietam
where pride and power and rights and sin
killed 23,000 in a day.
The way is rough
The fences line the roads they marched
The fields they defended
The farms that were overrun
The church that became a hospital.
The story shocks and hurts my heart
And yet, so does the front page
Bearing news of wars and armed conflict,
school shootings and gang violence.
We have not changed so very much,
for all of our technology.
Now as then, the fenceposts tell a story,
for violence leaves an uncertain shadow,
hurting a country and a culture and a world.
We are not unlike those who heard Jesus say…
“When you hear of wars
and reports of wars,
don’t be alarmed…” (Mark 13:7a)
I hold an unsteady hope in my heart,
longing for justice,
praying for courage,
and asking God for Peace.