Tonight, I accompanied my two youngest daughters in attending a vigil at a local park of the community where we live. Toward the end of the social distanced gathering among fellow residents, with our faces and breaths covered by PPE, we all together observed a time of silence in solidarity. In the spirit of the moment before us, alongside others across our nation, we stood and knelt and symbolically placed our bodies down on the ground in remembrance of George Floyd.
It was nearly ten days ago that one man was pinned down on a Midwest pavement when, while being unable to breathe, his life was unlawfully ended by enforcement at the knee. A life that matters to a world now bearing witness, proclaiming enough is enough, gives breath unto others’ intercultural plight at the sight that went viral amidst the present ongoing global pandemic.
For eight minutes and 46 seconds I prayed on my knees, bowing down along with others around our land in solid silence. With our hearts and souls prostrated beside each other, at the singular moment of that seminal event in all our minds, I felt a disconnected connection with the rest of humanity unlike any other time before.
These recent days, weeks and months of times set apart from one another in common journey continue to increasingly weigh on my whole being. I wonder at this time of united protest being yet another entirely unprecedented occurrence in the individual and collective experiences of all peoples and times. What on earth is happening with, in and to us?
At the critical confluence of current circumstances surrounding the world’s populations, I can imagine how unnerving, unsettling, undeniably becoming undone many might be in the midst of these things. Where is the Lord in all this? What am I even writing about here, really? I am not sure I even know at this point how to proceed.
It seems I am emotionally all over the place in the spectrum of human sentiments with a plethora of combinations and permutations mixing through the fabric of one’s existence within various frames of reference in the space-time continuum. It’s as though I am not quite suddenly unknowingly uncomfortably numb unlike one of the songs that come to mind from forty-one years ago performed and recorded by the rock group Pink Floyd. To borrow quoting selected excerpts from among their song lyrics:
“Hello? Hello? Hello? Is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me. Is there anyone at home? Come on now, I hear you’re feeling down. …. Can you show me where it hurts? …. Now I’ve got that feeling once again, I can’t explain, you would not understand. This is not how I am.”
The myriad range of unexpected expectations for traversing through these trying times, whether self-imposed or otherwise, one is afraid might inundate, incapacitate and further insulate to the point of inordinate inveterate inanity in humanity. Upon the search for meaning in significance of each people group’s interrelatedness among others seeking justice and peace through our collected memories’ viewing, I come to this juncture filled with awe at omnipotent omnipresent omniscient mercy and grace. Even in my waywardness of wondering wanderings, I cannot do other than pay homage ultimately to our Creator in whose image each and every human one of us is made, along with one whose name of George Floyd resounds this day.