Today I had my post long planned out. We have been out of the country for the week behind, so some pre-work had been done, ensuring the posts were timely and relevant for the reader and non-taxing and relaxing for the writer. It was a wonderful week.
Yet as I sit here prior to posting, something doesn’t feel 100% right about going ahead and penning as planned. Sure, it would be easy.
It would be equally easy this day to write about multiple angles surrounding today’s much anticipated Super Bowl LVII between the Chiefs and the Eagles… the faith and mindset of Mahomes and Hurts, the professional and personal tenure of coach Andy Reid — and how his once-believed disappointing dismissal from one led to increased success with the other, and of course, all things brothers Kelce.
We could also easily contemplate the massive consumption by us who watch today. Exactly how many chicken wings will be eaten? (Note: no wings here. In a tribute to Burrow and the Bengals — who almost made this game — Skyline Chili and Montgomery Inn BBQ will be on the menu.)
Nonetheless, all that would be easy. And all that would miss the unfathomable.
On Monday of last week, two earthquakes, near the Syrian border, struck Turkey and Syria. They had magnitudes of 7.8 and 7.5, approximately 9 hours apart.
Initial reporting showed the death toll to be massive; early confirmations were in the low thousands. That number, the number of confirmed deaths, at time of this writing is now over 29,000 people. According to AlJazeera, as of today, the number of deaths in Turkey rose to 24,617, with more than 4,500 people dying in Syria.
Let us sit with that number…
Know, too, in addition to the unfathomable tragedy, there are stories of extraordinary rescue. See, for example, the video of the young girl removed from the rubble “in the 150th hour,” said Dr. Fahrettin Koca, the health minister of Turkey. Absolutely, unspeakably amazing.
I felt need, no less, to speak a little bit more… a broader point, if you will… one that made me put my previous post away…
Sometimes it’s easy to sit behind our keyboards and simply peck away.
Sometimes it’s easy to focus on nearby occurrences that more gleefully attract our attention or are aligned with our individual passions.
Sometimes, therefore, obviously, it’s easy to not care about what doesn’t happen right in front of us.
But I think it’s important to care.
I think it’s important to recognize that our experience is only our experience; it isn’t everyone else’s. And that simple fact should broaden our perspective, realizing that we magnify and diminish based on what we actually see.
We care based on the proximity of our own experience.
29,000 people doesn’t let me do that today.
Just thinking sort of out loud, friends…
May our perspective always be broadened, recognizing how limited our individual vantage points often are.
Respectfully… and God be with the people in Turkey and Syria…