I struggle to write these words today.
I want to be light, airy, somewhat unimportant like decor, spring, or fun frivolous matters. Still coping with Covid has made such things far more important as we all try to adjust to our changing world and life as we knew it. We grasp for norms we once knew and celebrate tiny cheerful things. I’m guessing to dispel and combat all the unhappy heartbreaking challenges the last years have cast on us.
But, I can’t write about those today! My heart will not let me!
Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine is HEAVY in my heart and mind!
I transport to this suffering place. I imagine my family there, my sons being soldiers, my homeland bombed, my life being threatened by powerful outsiders with scripting scenarios to justify their actions. It could be us. It could be me and you!
The images are powerful, devastating and completely grief laden.
I don’t want to look, but feel as a fellow human, I must.
How very sad that one country with a Madman President can disrupt and destroy innocent lives! He speaks of it with such ease and forthrightness. Lies deceive his people and blame everyone else. Making his actions defensive when the rest of the world knows they are offensive and wrong.
On a much smaller scale, it’s happened to me. I’d bet it’s happened to you. Someone propagates a lie, twists the truth and there are some who believe them. They spoke their narrative as truth. Your narrative stands in opposition. You are helpless to convince someone who believes the other person’s narrative. As a result, lies are believed and maybe acted on.
This is the situation in Russia. The Russian government controls the narrative. Publishing lies to their people to gain their support. They accuse the Ukraine, NATO and the USA of making first moves to threaten them. Thus verifying their actions, propagating them as “defensive” moves, not aggressive. If we lived there, we may believe them too. They manipulate everything in their culture for the government’s benefit. Including the internet and influences from the outside world. The citizens are pawns in the government’s hands.
I question, “Why do their citizens believe them?” The answer is, they have no reason not to. Given their information, it all makes sense. But the narrative they live is lies. It is not challenged or questioned. If they do question, they are suppressed/silenced often by jailing or death.
It has encouraged me to see some protesting inside Russia. Those brave souls are arrested and who knows if they will ever get out! Some sneaky outside press has leaked images. Some of them have been arrested too!
It strikes me that mother’s and families in Russia will experience members coming home in body bags too. Grief will seize their lives. War’s experience is tragic on every side. The only difference is their own government killed Russia’s soldiers in totally unnecessary actions. If it is ever admitted, even in their thoughts, it multiplies the senseless tragedy the Russian family’s losing soldiers will live out the rest of their lives.
Ukrainians are westernized. Living in freedom. Carrying on life, much like we do. They seek peace with their neighbors.
“This week, if one were to believe Russian President Vladimir Putin’s pretext for invading the country. One goal of the ‘special military operation,’ as he called it, was to “denazify” Ukraine.” The claim is ridiculous on its face. Not only is Ukraine’s leader Jewish, many of his relatives were killed by Nazis in the Holocaust. (The Washington Post)
President Volodymyr Zelenzkvy, told this story about a family of four brothers… “Three of them, their parents and their families, became victims of the Holocaust. All of them were shot by German occupiers who invaded Ukraine,” he said. “The fourth brother survived.… Two years after the war, he had a son, and in 31 years, he had a grandson. In 40 more years, that grandson became president, and he is standing before you today.”
A war propagated on lies! It’s absurd!
My admiration for President Zelenzkyy grows daily. He encourages his people in word and deed!
From the New York Times…
The US government offered to evacuate Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy from Kyiv — but he declined. “The fight is here; I need ammunition, not a ride,” Zelenskyy said, The Associated Press reported.
Zelenskyy, 44, instead chose to remain in Ukraine’s capital as Russian forces brought the fight to the city streets, where gunfire and explosions were heard overnight Friday into Saturday.
He is Russia’s #1 Target, yet he did not think of himself, but put his country first!
Valiant, Courageous, Respectful, Exemplary, Inspiring! Character!
Please pray for Ukraine! I know words are hard to find, but God hears hearts! Remind each other to pray. Sometimes our “dailiness” keeps us occupied/distracted. We forget what others are facing. Remind yourself.
Yesterday, I searched Facebook for a profile frame to “Pray for Ukraine”. There wasn’t one, so I made my own! This isn’t just a reminder to my friends… it reminds ME! Consider something similar. Tape it to your mirror. Put a card on your table. Keep it before you!
Let me offer this prayer from Every Moment Holy by Douglas Kaine McKelvey…
A LITURGY FOR THE … Sound of Sirens
The wail of sirens is the anthem of our brokenness, reminding us that fear and tragedy, pain and crime yet plague a creation groaning for its redemption.
Therefore attend those now in crisis, O Lord, remaining ever merciful and mindful of their frailties.
May their first cry be to you, and may such cries be met by your presence and your peace.
Grant good judgment to those who minister aid and protection, and comfort all who endure trauma or loss. Use even these parts of our stories which are accompanied by sirens,
O Lord, to press us closer to your heart.
It’s perfectly acceptable to use other’s words when yours won’t come! Or when they speak your heart so clearly! These popped off the page at me today! Thank you to the dear friend who gifted me this book yesterday… God’s timing on display!!
Pray for Russian eyes to be opened and their efforts thwarted!
Praying for Ukraine,