Two years ago, today, a horrific crime was commited in my local area against some Amish school girls. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Amish_school_shooting
As i came to work this morning, a local radion station had a local Mennonite Pastor pray over the air waves and then played some related, soothing music. Then the two morning DJ's came on the air and talked a little bit about the incident and related how they were still healing from that tradegy. i cried a bit because it had been such a horrid time - trying to come to grips with once again innocent lives being cut short.
One of the DJ's mentioned how the Amish community is still offering forgiveness and actually extended hands of kindness and words of healing to the shooter's family.
That doesn't often happen, does it? Usually we hold the grudge or resent the entire family of someone and in some cultures, a life of someone (or many) of the shooter's family would be taken in vengenance. Lashing out, returning the hurt makes us 'feel better' and many people choose that path in hurtful situations.
However, the Amish community, as a whole, stood and said...we aren't doing that..we WILL look for the blessings in this situation, we WILL choose to forgive...we WILL not become bitter and hateful.
And though that is sometimes hard to understand, i believe it is the better way. A better way to live, a better way to conduct yourself and a better way of finding healing in hurtful and horrid situations. Easy? Not at all. But far better.
So today, i feel a bit quiet -remembering the horror of that day but yet learning from a group of people who most would see as backwards and odd.
Live each day as if it's your last....to the fullest..keeping hate and bitterness at bay, loving deeply... forgiving quickly.
i'm thankful for today. Because it means i have another day to live with wild abandon.