Because today is 9/11, we all have thoughts on our minds about the terrible tragedy and loss of life in New York City on that fateful day. Today is indeed a day to remember, reflect and never forget.
But is that all there is? Remembering? Reflecting? Not forgetting?
Without being holier than thou, can I add something to the discussion of 9/11? While we remember and seek to honor those who lost their lives innocently, let us also seek to be better people ourselves because of 9/11.
I've been thinking about this all week as this day got closer and closer. If I had been on one of those airplanes or in the Pentagon or in one of the towers and had lost my life that day, what would I have left behind? Would there be a legacy that my children and Diane would be able to point to and be proud of? Or do I just sell Real Estate for a living?
9/11 makes me want to evalute my life. It makes me want to say, "What different have I made in the life of someone else?" And it makes me eager to be a person whom others know as one who has integrity and does good and believes in others and tries to make the world a better place.
Because I have not always been these things. I have failed to care about others, at times. I have failed to engage in order to effect positive change when I know I should have. I have not loved Diane in the way I always should have nor have I always been the best dad I could have been. I have not chosen to be a big brother and I never volunteered to be a teacher's helper. And there are myriad other things that I have not done that I could have done and probably should have done.
Do I just sell real estate or am I doing something positive and leaving a legacy?
I won't go into the long version of the story, but through some God led events, Diane and I now help a tiny little church. It's mostly older people who like things the way they like things. It drives me crazy most days when we are there. But then there are the kids. We have a group of around 25 Jr Highers and High School kids who come from mostly broken families. They don't have a lot of resources. And most of them don't have much hope to do much beyond high school.
My job is to help them dream dreams. To help them see that they can become anything they want to become. To help them go further than they think they can go. And to invoke a fire within them that will cause them to become change agents and leaders among their peers and in their lives well beyond Jr High and High School. Most days this is pretty tough. Most of them don't have a lot of dreams or much hope. I don't know if I'll get through to any of these kids, but they are my project. I believe in them. And I will seek to invest in them because so many others don't.
There are other ways that 9/11 makes me want to be a better person also. Many days I don't do a very good job at living a life of integrity and being kind to others and making the world a better place, and giving Diane more attention than real estate demands and engaging my own (now grown) kids, but this day...this tragic day reminds me that life is short and these things are more important.
And 9/11 reminds me of this also. What we do today and everyday can make a difference for good.
When we remember.
Twin Towers picture courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/specialkrb/3917465393/
Rain puddle picture courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons: http://www.flickr.com/photos/pagedooley/2577006675/
Originally Posted at: My Owasso Home