This can be the beat of a heart or the sentiment in the atmosphere. It can be felt, tasted and heard. It can race, slow or stop. It can pace or it can accelerate.
His pulse is slowing and steady at moments, then rapid and frantic when startled. When I wake him, I back up because often he bolts up. It is as if he is in a different reality and I am asking him back. I sometimes watch him breathing from across the room. It moves steady then often darts when he notices or observes. It is often stressful to be in crowds or in public. He is exposed, vulnerable and hyper-sensitive. He has a hard time relaxing away from his home and family. He is on guard and always mind-wandering.
His head is filled with images, and his heart and soul filled with feelings. This comes from exposure to trauma, anger and the ugly in society. There are moments that can help with this, but most of the daily work consists of this, so it begins to erode at human nature. It begins to alter the pulse.
There are people who are deliberate in their agitation, words, actions and plans towards creating chaos and disruption. They hurl insults, wave signs, and yell threats. The people who are most dangerous in all of this though are those who are quietly working to cause problems. They are those who stir the pot and continue the hateful conversations. This is a purposeful attempt to undermine, discourage and push good police officers to a brink.
The pulse of the people is also changing. There is anger, hate, urgency and spite. The neighborhoods have started erupting. The pulse has begun to jump all over the place. It is rapid, slow, steady, inconsistent, and chaotic.
Much is happening in what is going to surely be a long, hot, violent summer. The pulse can only be tempered when the rhetoric dies down and the bravery is allowed to emerge. The steady beat will probably never return. This is a city that has broken its backbone. Its pulse is rapid and hot. It is startled and chaotic. It beats then it quiets. Let us pray that the silence does not settle in. Pray that God restores stable heartbeats to those who have honor and protection at their core. Pray that God delivers them from evil. Pray that He helps them restore the steady in their pulse.