I was intrigued by Joe Biden’s speech last night. Among many of the inspiring words he spoke, he mentioned a favorite hymn of his late son, Beau. It captured the faith that sustained Joe in his lifetime; a lifetime of much grief and sorrow. And yet he came through it with his faith intact and achieved his goal of being elected President of the United States after two previous attempts.
This hymn speaks to many of us, but not all of us hear it. Here then is OnEagle’s Wings sung by Josh Groban. Happy Sunday.
Words have a way of wandering around my mind and looking for a place to plant themselves. That is when I grab paper, pen, pencil or keyboard and let them have their way.
I love words. They can decorate a plain piece of paper with wisdom, advice, humor, sorrow, poetry, profanity, romance, love…and tragedy. I heard these words of advice on CBC Radio One yesterday, from a call-in listener. The topic was the Syrian refugees and the photo of the little three-year-old boy who washed up on a shore in Turkey, from a capsized boat which would hopefully lead to a new life here in Canada.
The radio host lamented the fact that we don’t always pay close attention to world events until something like the plight of this innocent child brings us to attention…that we fail to take action when and where it is needed. The caller then made this comment: “Don’t look back at what you didn’t do in the past…look forward to what you can do now.” Words. Words to think by, words to feel by, words to act by, words to live by.
Words come in many languages, are spoken by many tongues, are heard by many ears, are written by many authors, poets, laymen, and preachers.
Yesterday I encountered both joy and sorrow, not personally, but via social media.
The first story was about the death, on Mother’s Day, of Lauren Davis, the beautiful twenty-four old daughter of a well known media personality, Erin Davis, co-host of the Toronto radio station CHFI morning show. The tragic details are unknown at this time but the news is definitely one of sorrow…deep, deep sorrow.
The second story is about love. It’s about a couple who lived in Ottawa, dated for four years in their teenage years, drifted apart, each married other people, and became widowed in recent years. Happenstance caused them to reunite in Ottawa and rekindle the old flame. Today they are eighty-two and eighty-four years of age and planning to marry in June of this year. This is a story of joy…deep, deep joy.
These stories touch me deeply. I feel the sorrow of a mother losing her daughter to death; it breaks my heart. I also feel the bliss of the couple reunited after sixty-five years; it fills my heart with joy.
Joy and sorrow…each capable of filling the soul with heartfelt emotions…each capable of holding the heart captive…each a part of life…joy and sorrow.
This month I had the privelege of observing the celebration of life in two entirely different ways.
Both were the ending of old lives and the beginning of new.
One was a wake, and the other, a wedding.
The first was a memorial for a dear friend who exchanged life on earth for life everafter in the heavenly realm, leaving behind her role as daughter, sister, mother, wife; a life that death did part.
I witnessed the second celebration from a distance, but the reality was the same. This time the life left behind was that of singleness, in exchange for the role of wife, helpmate, lover, friend; a new life of sharing til death do part.
Both events were not only celebrations of life but continuations of life. One life had been fully lived, and the other will now be lived more fully.
It was my privelege to observe both the wake and the wedding of two beautiful ladies, exchanging old lives for new, and for each, the journey continues.