By not having the radio on at breakfast we managed to remain oblivious to the horror of the bomb in Manchester until after my wife had done the school run. Since then I haven't been able to concentrate. I wept as I read the words of parents desperately appealing on social media for their children. Teenagers, who had been at the concert, who they had not heard from since last night's terror attack. I cannot imagine the fear or the pain that is tearing through so many families this morning.
I found myself agreeing more with the Muslim Council of Britain in their statement than Theresa May in hers. They said: "May the perpetrators face the full weight of justice, in this life and the next."
It's on days like this that you physically ache for justice. For an end to the suffering and the pain. To a world of safety and security.
That's why I don't agree with Mrs May when she said that, "...while we experienced the worst in humanity in Manchester we also experienced the best."
I don't want to play down the extraordinary bravery of the emergency services nor the kindness of taxi drivers ferrying people home free of charge. I don't want to trivialise the love shown by members of the public as they helped one another, bleeding, away from the carnage. But the best of humanity goes far further than that. It is because of the best of humanity that there is hope in the face of the horror.
The man Jesus lived a life like no other. A life of perfect love and goodness. He had compassion on all in need however tired he was. And like the people of Manchester, the worst situation brought out the best in him. He went, in accordance with the plan that he and his Father had devised before the creation of the world, to bear the evil of the human heart and all the punishment that it's actions deserve. Both the brutal deeds that leave us shocked and the things that we in our self-righteousness regard as trivial. Through his death at the cross he made a perfect new world possible and through his resurrection declared that this death defeating future is open to all who come to him.
And though I'm no terrorist I need that forgiveness and that future. I know it today because I have been convicted that, whilst I have shed a tear for the children of Northwest England, I have regularly ignored the deaths of the thousands of children in Syria and Iraq. I have ignored the headlines of another bombing in Baghdad because I don't care. When life close to home is comfortable, I don't long for peace and safety for our broken world.
Because peace and safety will come. God has promised. And he's never failed to keep a promise yet. As the apostle Paul said to the cynical intellectuals of Athens in Acts 17:
"The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent, because he has fixed a day on which he will judge the world in righteousness by a man whom he has appointed; and of this he has given assurance to all by raising him from the dead.” (Acts 17:30-31)
On days like today I just want to pray. "Come Lord Jesus!"