Have you ever asked yourself this question? How can I focus on the blessings in my life when the events in the world are so sad and the prospects for change seem so bleak? You may have asked yourself this question upon hearing of the tragic news in Charleston, South Carolina last week when a young white man walked into the Emanuel AME church, was welcomed into the Bible study group, spent an hour with those folks and then proceeded to shoot them all dead. Yet another racially motivated hate crime. Yet another angry, mentally deranged young man allowed to have a gun.
Last week I asked myself that question.
I asked myself that question when I heard that a friend was just placed in hospice care after battling stage 4 colon cancer. She’s barely forty years old and has a young child. After raising and spending billions of dollars in cancer research, lives are still cut short by this scourge.
And then, I remember. Tragedies like these break our hearts…and break them open. We feel immense compassion and the love in our hearts literally goes out to those affected. Devastating events like the one in Charleston unite us as a people. Skin color doesn’t determine how much love we feel for the families. Our own religious affiliation doesn’t dictate the level of our compassion. Suddenly we are all one people. And our nation is, once again, actively debating the issue of gun violence.
When someone close to us is in the process of dying, family and friends draw closer. Suddenly old squabbles, past resentments melt away. Only the love survives. What’s ultimately important in life…sharing our love and light…comes to the forefront. It’s all that matters.
Love unites. Love heals. And love is what finds a solution to the world’s problems.
And for that I feel extremely grateful!