24 April 2015

one hundred years ago

Today, April 24th, marks 100 years since the beginning of the Armenian Genocide; starting in 1915, 1.5 million Armenians were systematically murdered. My grandmother was orphaned and later found by an aunt in an orphanage in France. My grandfather and his elder sister fled and entered the United States alone as children through Ellis Island in 1918. This is a day to remember the precious lives of those that were starved, raped, kidnapped, and slaughtered; to grieve the incomprehensible loss and evil; to forgive because Christ himself has forgiven by the shedding of his own blood; and now to live, because this is the inheritance of grace.

My cry to the Lord is for reconciliation, for comfort, for blessing, and for freedom for Armenians. And for reconciliation, for comfort, for blessing, and for freedom for Turks.

"Do you not know? Do you not hear?
Has it not been told you from the beginning?
It is the Lord who sits above the circle of the earth,
and its inhabitants are like grasshoppers;
who stretches out the heaves like a curtain,
and spreads them like a tent to dwell in;
who brings princes to nothing,
and makes the rulers of the earth as emptiness….
Why do you say, O Jacob,
and speak, O Israel,
'My way is hidden from the Lord,
and my right is disregarded by my God'?
Have you not known?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He does not faint or grow weary;
his understanding is unsearchable.
He gives power to the faint,
and to him who has no might he increases his strength.
Even youths shall faint and be weary,
and young men shall fall exhausted;
but they who wait of the Lord shall renew their strength;
they shall mount up with wings like eagles;
they shall run and not be weary;
they shall walk and not faint."
(From Isaiah 40.)

The symbol that has been chosen to commemorate the genocide is the forget-me-not. Ironically, we have hundreds of them growing along our front path this year.

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