My heart goes out to those who have lost loved ones, a home and community in the tragedy of Grenfell Tower. I cannot begin to imagine the fear and horror of those poor people and the nightmare they have lived through and continue to live through. In this country we are really blessed to have incredible emergency services and hospital facilities.
It does seem that, in Britain, at the moment we have had more than our fair share of heartache. This year, we have lived through terrorism in Manchester and London and now this tragedy in London. In the face of such immense pressure, communities can either pull together or, be driven apart.
I have no doubt, over the coming weeks and months more revelations will come out about these tragedies that will leave people asking “how could this have been allowed to happen?”. In the wake of Grenfell Tower, there has been much anger already expressed. I am wary of those who would seek to capitalize on a communities suffering for their own narrow ends whether politically or in the media.
When it comes to questions on human suffering, there are no easy or “off pat” answers we can give. The Bible certainly echos that, take a quick glimpse through the Psalms or, try and unravel the book of Job!
What I do know, however, is that God is not immune to our sadness and our suffering. In Jesus, He experienced both the best and the worst that this world has to offer and, when our hearts are breaking, His is breaking too.
Over these last few days, our nation has been remembering the MP Jo Cox, who lost her life so tragically. Her famous quote, that we have been reminded of is;
I, for one, hope that as a nation we do pull together in the wake of these tragedies. I pray lessons will be learnt, justice will be given, the homeless will be housed, the bereaved will be supported and that we will come together for the benefit of all.
Many centuries ago, a prophet called Amos spoke the word of God to the nation of Israel. He reminded the people what God required of them and those are words we need to hear as a nation now;
But let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!
(Amos 5 vs. 24)