I had a recurring dream as a child. I was on my tricycle on the sidewalk in front of our house, the little light green house on North 49th Street where we lived until I was four and a half. I was on my red tricycle when a big dark green old-fashioned sedan came careening down the hill on the sidewalk. When I had the dream, I always woke up terrified and crying just before the car plowed over me.
Again and again I had that dream as a child. I was as powerless to stop the dream from recurring as I was powerless in the dream to either get away from the car, or to stop the car on its menacing dive toward my destruction.
Monday I awoke refreshed and happy from a good night’s sleep but taking my phone off its charger and sitting down in the easy chair in our bedroom I read the headlines of Sunday night’s massacre in Las Vegas. I felt the familiar feeling from childhood–the recurring dream in which I am utterly powerless, utterly unable to change the course of events around me. I wanted to scream, but instead I simply sat, stunned, sad, and suddenly weary as if I had not slept in years.
Why does this nightmare, this gun violence nightmare, this only in America nightmare, why does it keep coming, keep bearing down on us again and again and again? When will we wake up? When will we claim our power to stop this from happening? When will we decide we are not scared little children waking from a bad dream, but full-grown adults fully capable of making this stop? When will we insist that just as cars don’t belong on the sidewalk where children ride their trikes, rapid fire weapons and hand guns have no legitimate place among us?
How long until we wake up, claim our power, and put a stop to this nightmare once and for all? Because, unlike my recurring childhood dream where I awakened shaken, but very much healthy and alive, in this national gun violence recurring nightmare– real children of God die, needlessly, violently,
Every. Single. Time.
In the name of God who said, “Do not kill” how about we wake up and collectively decide God probably got it right on that accord? How about we wake up? How about we make the nightmares stop? How about we claim our power? How about we do it, beginning now?
This nightmare needs to stop. Please, God, make it stop. Please, my fellow Americans, make it stop. Please.
I’ll do my part, and you do yours, I’ll contact my senators and representatives and I’ll be persistent and you contact yours and be persistent and dogged and unwavering and together we will make it stop.
And then, oh! and then, we will awaken, we will awaken, living the recurring dream, being refreshed and happy on each new day that the Lord has made for all of us to rejoice and be glad in.