Senseless death all around this country this week. Two crazed young men decided that it was their mission to set off two bombs and kill three people - two young women and one eight year old boy - and injure hundreds. In their quest, one of the bombers also lost his life - the other is hospitalized at this writing. Before people could even catch their breath and begin to take that in, a small town, West, Texas felt the power of a 2.1 earthquake when a fertilizer plant in the town blew up. The blast was felt all around the town - volunteer firemen who had been in the building fighting fires lost their lives - as did many others - in that blast. During this same week, a 6.6 magnitude earthquake hit China, killing hundreds and injuring many more. Senseless death...with everyone asking why? Why did these people have to lose their lives? Well, we many never know the real answers - there may be no answers. But this is what I think. Here is just one possibility. Not a good one - but a possibility nonetheless.
Maybe all this death and destruction had a reason...
When the first bomb went off you see shock in the faces in the people in the pictures you see. You see disbelief and just utter shock. You see some people running away from the blast. But what is amazing - what was just truly amazing and unbelievable -was that there were more people running toward the destruction. People running towards debris and body parts falling from the sky. People running to see what they could do to help. And you see some now iconic pictures.
In one picture, you see a man in a cowboy hat surrounded by other people pushing another man in a wheelchair. In some of the photos - the ones that got out before they could be censored - you see that the man in the wheelchair is missing his legs...Later you discover that the man in the cowboy hat - the one pushing the wheelchair - was at the marathon handing out American flags. They were in honor of his sons - one lost in war in a foreign land, one lost in a war in his mind - a war that ended with his suicide. This man in the cowboy hat was not at the race to cheer on anyone he knew personally - but maybe to exorcise some devils in his own mind. Devils that might have left because of the life he helped to save.
You see another picture...a woman lying on the ground surrounded by blood. A young man kneeling over her - tenderly talking to her. It looks as if a loving husband or boyfriend is caressing a hurting girlfriend or wife. What you don't know from looking at the picture, is that this man does not know the woman he is caressing. He is a stranger to the woman. A woman he helped to save.
You see other pictures like this. And you hear stories. Stories of people who live nearby, or work nearby, offering hope and comfort to those from the marathon. Those who were not physically harmed, but who had just witnessed a war zone in a place they had never expected to see one. You see complete strangers opening their homes and businesses to help those who are lost to find some small bit of comfort. A kind word, a caring hand...and open house or restaurant just when one was needed.
And you see this happening not just in Boston. Boston is getting the most attention - perhaps because it was the first disaster - perhaps because it was the most unbelievable. But you see the same compassion in West, Texas and in China. You see it with volunteers running into a burning, exploding building trying to save their friends, family members, co-workers. You see it with neighbors trying to dig neighbors out of the rubble that was once their homes and business in China.
Maybe these evil, horrible things happened for a reason...maybe the Supreme Being - whichever one you believe in - for me it is my God - maybe He was showing the world that there may be horror in this world. There may be ultimate evil. But there is something out there that will overcome the horror and the evil...we have human compassion...love for our fellow man...an overwhelming goodness in people that you most often see in the hardest of times. Maybe God wanted to remind us all that humankind is still good...and that we can overcome anything as long as we work together as a team. Not as a family, or a neighborhood, city or even country. But as the human race...
Five things that put a smile on my face today...
1. Jaxon saying "I love you Grammy!"
2. A text from Tabitha - "You may get your wish - contractions are coming closer!"
3. Jaxon playing with new found cousins - and them playing with him - being gentle and tough at the same time.
4. Spending the day with my husband...
5. A text from both my sisters promising breakfast together tomorrow.