Life is resilient. We know this.
There are universal assumptions we’ve grown up with…at least here in the US.
Life conquers death. Life will overcome. Life will always find a way to overcome. In the same way we know that good will eventually win out over evil, we know that life will ultimately defeat death.
But in one of the universe’s ultimate dichotomies, life is also fragile and fleeting.
While we may know on some level that life overcomes death, we are confronted daily with the opposite reality. In an instant of confusion, we realize how fragile we are.
Life is fragile in the womb of a young mother dreaming of having children
Life is fragile in the stifling air of a hospice bedroom
Life is fragile on a college campus suddenly under attack
Life is fragile in a neighborhood taken over by chaos and fear
Life is fragile on a sidewalk in Paris, a street in Ferguson, a building in Beirut, a village in Nigeria, a border-crossing in Syria, a leaky boat crossing the Mediterranean.
Life is fragile.
It’s in moments like this, during times like these that we realize just how fleeting life is.
It’s here. Then…not here.
I write a lot on this blog about going the extra mile and reaching out to live the abundant life and I definitely believe that’s important. However, there are times we need to remember those who can’t reach out. For those who are too old or too young or too desperate, too poor or too sick, too weak or vulnerable there is no abundant life. There’s barely life alone and they’re doing all they can to hold on.
Forget reaching out. It’s about survival.
The darkness of death comes and those of us among the living light candles. We hold one another close. We pray. We change the color of our porch lights. We change the background on our profile photo. We let the tears of sadness fall and we pray that joy and light and life will someday, somehow return.
With all our strength and with help from Life Himself, we climb up out of the cold icy grip of death and turn our faces to the warmth of Life and we vow to live and to make each day count. We vow to pay attention, to spend more time, to listen more, to fret less, to cherish those we love. We promise to make the sacrifices mean something. We choose to embrace life itself and live it more fully.
On and on the rain will say how fragile we are.
How fragile we are.