Our family watched the movie “Sully” the other night.
I cried when they showed the real people whose lives were spared hugging and thanking Captain Sully for his choice to do what was necessary to save them.
Because I know that each life saved also saved lives of others–saved them from the awful burden of grief and sorrow that would have become their daily experience.
I’ve written here a great deal about the need for friends and family and the church community to “mourn with those who mourn”.
The ones who have no choice to but to walk this Valley of the Shadow of Death need faithful, compassionate companions.
My heart has been forcibly expanded by sorrow until it literally breaks again when I hear of another family that must bear this burden.
But tonight I realized that this deep grief I carry has created an equally strong and proportional reaction to the great joy others experience when lives are saved.
Because I know, know, know exactly what it feels like when the outcome is disastrous, I can feel a joy that those who merely escape it will never know.
I know by terrible experience what they are spared.
Not only what they get to keep-
but also what they will never be forced to understand.
They rejoice because they imagine what might have happened. I rejoice because I know what it feels like when it does happen.
When death is thwarted my heart dances.
I sing the song of victory over the forces of darkness.
Remember when the Eternal brought back the exiles to Zion?
It was as if we were dreaming—
Our mouths were filled with laughter;
our tongues were spilling over into song.
The word went out across the prairies and deserts,
across the hills, over the oceans wide, from nation to nation:
“The Eternal has done remarkable things for them.”
We shook our heads. All of us were stunned—the Eternal has done remarkable things for us.
We were beyond happy, beyond joyful.
Psalm 126:1-3 VOICE