It seems that many people witnessed this horrifying tragedy as they followed. They were part of the ride on the wild water. It was the safe family ride where all ages could enjoy sitting together for their ride on the “river rapids.”
The grief is tangible. For a few days the people of Queensland will forget about the tragedies happening in the rest of the world and focus on their local “world tragedy” This is their backyard, their neighborhood.
Dreamworld is where you are carefree; and you leave the worries of the world behind. No harm should ever come to you in Dreamworld.
I have often listened to the delight of children in our church and Community Centre who have been to the “worlds’ on the Gold Coast. it is the Disneyworld of Australia. Dreamworld is where I took my grandson for his first “world” adventure. It was my choice before Movieworld and Waterworld. Dreamworld seems more innocent and childlike.
Dreams should never be destroyed and crushed at Dreamworld.
People remonstrate; “Surely here we have the right to be safe! Where is the guarantee that there is one place we can trust all will be okay?”
Anger is starting to emerge from the shock. Who is to blame?
Who will pay for this? How can we prevent this from happening again?
You can be assured that Health and Safety is a daily consideration in these places. Risk Management is prominent in the everyday life of Dreamworld. A recent extensive inspection has only just been completed.
The Assistant Commissioner of Police caringly stated that it “was a miracle – the providence of God” that the two children in the raft survived. (He did a very good job of asking the media and social media to give the grieving families respect and privacy.)
I might have said the same in his position and in that confronting situation. But therein lies a problem when you say one good outcome is the will of God. If the will of God can save two children, why didn't the will of God save the four adults?
Why doesn't the will of God save all the children of Syria?
Human error, human misjudgment, have been with us always.
No doubt about it; there will be a number of elements of human error that have brought about this unnecessary tragedy at Dreamworld. Blame will be cast. Many will contribute to the discussion on how it could have been prevented.
We will certainly learn from this – at least for a while.
BUT nothing will bring back the four people who died. That kind of miracle is not in our world.
Actually, every cruel death in retrospect is unnecessary.
I believe people of faith who follow Jesus have grown long past the whole notion of offering; ‘This was God’s will” or “God saved the two children” (we don’t know quite what to say about the death of adults)
I see children and adults everywhere wanting to participate in the journey of grief; they want to contribute something of themselves; they want to help heal the pain. They want to somehow save someone.
I believe this is the will of God and always has been despite the unending choreography of human error and human wrongdoing.
That will of God was witnessed at its best in Jesus Christ. This will of God saves the world from the pit of blackness and hopelessness.
The cross of Jesus symbolizes that a new and different life can emerge forum the worst of everything.
Some might say then - “what do we do then? we are powerless – do we just accept all things and be nice about it? “
Roman Catholic Bishop Romero who was gunned down because he chose to speak out, preach against, and fight corruption and the drug trade, once said “Don't live to gain more; live to be more…”
Jesus said to all of history ‘Lose your life to find it.” Jesus was the will of God.
We all have a lot to ‘lose’ in our life and leave behind if we are to keep healing the world around us. For now, it is a good thing to grieve and pray. There is so much in the world that needs us to shed a tear and find a way to heal.
This must be the priority and example of the church and its community. I rejoice that I am alive today; to be with you and to make some small difference with you.
May the will of God be with each one of you.