A prayer, a silent moment, a candle, or the forwarding of this letter to the world is all I ask…
If I ever wrote an article that should go viral, it is this one. If I ever had a prayer that I pray would be shared by the world, it is on this day. If there ever were a person who represents the possible best in all of us, it is he. If there were ever a man who deserves our deepest gratitude, we should extend it. If there ever were an example for us to model, perhaps this is it.
So tonight I take a public pause to request a moment of silence for a person I am proud to call my friend. I publish not his name in respect to his privacy. He asks for no limelight and I wish to not embarrass him, and as you might guess he has dedicated his life to the armed forces. One of the elite brave who risk life and limb to not only defend our freedoms, but to stand at the front lines in doing whatever he can to protect the innocent in the world.
20 years he has served us. In meeting him, he boasts not of his accomplishments, although he has the physical stature to do so. Nor does he intimidate or belittle, although he has the intellect that could. He takes no grandstand, speaks little of himself and prefers to push others in being the best they can be.
On battleground he has survived and in peacetime he has stood steadfast as a defender of humanity. In all, his focus has been resolute, patriotic, quiet and powerfully humble. He speaks his mind and holds his tongue; and, I hope I do not offend him in writing the post. Yet I must.
“If I ever wrote an article that should go viral, it is this one. If I ever had a prayer that I pray would be shared by the world, it is this day.
I’m blindsided. Dropped to my very knees by the surrealism of the situation: My friend, 20 years of military service. My friend, 20 years standing directly in harms way to unflinchingly risk all in the fight for human dignity. 20 years carrying little weaponry as a combat photographer; now strapped to a wheelchair by a freakish surgical error.
“They told me it’s nerve damage and it might be permanent,” he says without cracking his voice. “It sucks, but I believe God will never give me anything that I cannot bear,” he holds.
I’m blindsided. Dropped to my very knees by the surrealism of the situation.
“I’m a little down on the administration right now,” he saddens as he expands in his signature form, thinking not of himself, “I’ve lost brothers, and for what! He emotes as he expresses a list of concerns regarding world affairs.
“Fathers are being murdered and their heads are being placed in their children’s lap. Who does that! If I could, I’d go over there myself, someone has to protect those people! It’s just wrong!”
A prayer, a silent moment, a candle, or the forwarding of this letter to the world is all I ask; and not taking away from my good friend, I must expand on his story. I know that is what he would want me to do, for he is not alone.
He speaks of his lost brothers and of the innocent victims to unjust wars, all of which deserve this silent moment I am asking of us. That we may reflect upon the lost hero’s. That we may pray for the safety of those engaged in the war for human rights, and that the we remain aware of the millions of innocent who are so cruelly being murdered and persecuted for their beliefs.
Yes, lets pause our lives for a minute to reflect upon our blessings as we listen to the quite voice in the back of our thoughts, and as we open our eyes to start our days, shall we examine what we can do, even within the reaches of our community, to plant the seeds of healing.
The wars are nowhere near over; more realistically, they are just beginning. Yet, we do have choice and are equally enlisted with the opportunity to evoke change. For it is through our thoughts, our spiritual connectiveness, our active voting, how we respect our neighbors and the way we teach our children where the genesis for a better world is to be cultivated.
So let us unite in this thoughtful moment of silence. Might we not only ask for that miracle recovery for my friend, but may we also give thanks to the many who are actively fighting for the human rights we all so evenly deserve; and as we do, shall we commit to doing all we can to ensure a better future for our children.
Sadly I see no quick answer, and I cry in thinking of the many who will still be senselessly lost. I’ll not bury my head in the sand as I admit there is true evil in the world. But as for good people human, we are the majority, and to silence we cannot be pushed. For in each of us are the keys to the doors of what’s to come. So let us look towards each other. Let us consider the lessons we teach our children, and let us empower our individual works and acts in knowing their effects can be cumulatively profound.
“If I ever wrote an article that should go viral, it is this one. If I ever had a prayer that I pray would be shared by the world, it is this day.”
The battles are here. The war is far from over. It’s time to quite our reactions for just a moment; and in doing so, may we look towards each other with refreshed vision.
Take care my good friends,