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 The king ordered Joab and Abishai and Ittai, saying, “Deal gently for my sake with the young man Absalom.” And all the people heard when the king gave orders to all the commanders concerning Absalom.

So the army went out into the field against Israel; and the battle was fought in the forest of Ephraim. The men of Israel were defeated there by the servants of David, and the slaughter there was great on that day, twenty thousand men. The battle spread over the face of all the country; and the forest claimed more victims that day than the sword.

Absalom happened to meet the servants of David. Absalom was riding on his mule, and the mule went under the thick branches of a great oak. His head caught fast in the oak, and he was left hanging[a] between heaven and earth, while the mule that was under him went on.

15 And ten young men, Joab’s armor-bearers, surrounded Absalom and struck him, and killed him.

31 Then the Cushite came; and the Cushite said, “Good tidings for my lord the king! For the Lord has vindicated you this day, delivering you from the power of all who rose up against you.” 32 The king said to the Cushite, “Is it well with the young man Absalom?” The Cushite answered, “May the enemies of my lord the king, and all who rise up to do you harm, be like that young man.”

33 The king was deeply moved, and went up to the chamber over the gate, and wept; and as he went, he said, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!” – 2 Samuel 18:5-9, 15, 31-33

As I write this, a friend of mine just lost her son; I CANNOT IMAGINE what this must feel like….  Jason Daniels, son of Julie and Darryl Williamson was a tragic victim of a hit and run and left to die in the streets of Tampa on July 21, 2018.  I’m struggling to find words of comfort that I might share with them.  I’m struggling with the question of why this happened and I’m struggling to know that someone out there hit another human being with their car and simply drove away.

Losing someone is hard.  But, when we lose a child, we lose part of ourselves.  Right now, Julie and Darryl are lost and in pain.  And even though their faith is rock solid, their grief and pain are real.  Knowing Julie, I imagine she may be crying out as David did, “… if only I had died instead of you…”

Would you pray this prayer for Julie and Darryl please?

Holy God,

We are so very sad and filled with grief, for we cannot understand what happened to Jason.  Please help us to know that however hard it is for their family, he is being looked after by you and that you love him still more than anyone.  God, even as you look after Jason, please look after the Williamson family as well.  In Jesus’ name, we pray.  Amen.