It’s been seventeen years since the unimaginable terror of that nightmare day we refer to simply as 9/11. Sixteen times now we have noticed that day on the calendar and felt that ache of what was lost… so many precious lives, the general sense of safety on American soil, the naive innocence that never imagined it could happen here.
I guess the ache is deeper in my own heart this time having recently visited the site where the twin towers of the World Trade Center once stood. I walked through the streets and felt the gravity of that place just from knowing what had taken place. And, on a cool and rainy April morning, I walked up to the memorial pool in the footprint of the north tower.
(This is a brief video I took as I walked up to the memorial that gives just a momentary glimpse of the sight and sound.)
The names etched on stone, each one a life snuffed out by the insatiable hate of that act, seemed to whisper to me as I glanced across them, longing to be remembered. The sound of the water flowing endlessly through this elegant crater seemed to drown out the noise of the city around us. The realization of what we were seeing and the significance thereof caused people all around to speak in hushed tones and somber demeanor. Continue reading The Need to Remember
These flowers are growing in my flower bed. I planted them a few seasons ago because my Sweetie loves daisies. I do too now. They’re very resilient and remarkably hearty.
I planted daisies so my wife would see them day after day and know that I love her.
But there are other less intentional results of planting daisies.
I see them and remember why I planted them. I see them in the winter time when everything is brown and dormant and I pull the old dead stuff away. I see them begin to come back each spring with those dark green leaves peaking through the mulch. I see them spread out and fill out and produce those little buds. I see the first flowers and know that there are many more to come.
But sometimes I just see the grass that I can’t seem to get to grow 3 feet away on the other side of the sidewalk and yet somehow thrives in the midst of the daisies. Sometimes I see that annoying nutgrass stalk that, if I pull it out, will somehow multiply and spread even more. Sometimes I see the dead leaves that I didn’t manage to get cleaned out of the flower bed very effectively. Continue reading Beautiful Mess
Recent days have seen some truly amazing people leave the bonds of this world in what has seemed truly untimely deaths. The ones on whom I reflect have lived lives that testify powerfully of a life beyond – the true life that they no doubt enjoy even now in the presence of their Father whom they loved so very truly.
The peole that truly knew these folks are left in a very challenging spot. We are taught by our trust in God’s promises that have gone on are far better off than we. Disease has no more power over them and the frustrating limitations of this flesh has been left behind.
But we who remain are caught in this awkward mixture of deep sorrow for the loss of one so dear and yet a profound gratitude that their suffering has ended and their joy is full. We know down deep in our souls that it is well, as the old song so simply states it. And yet, our hearts hurt.
Continue reading It is Well, BUT…