BOUNTIFUL — I haven’t been able to sleep the last couple of nights. Like many of you, I can’t get the images of the Boston Marathon bombing out of my head. A cloud of heavy sadness has hung over me. I wasn’t even there. I cannot imagine what it was like for those that were there and even worse for those who felt it firsthand.
I watched as Matt Lauer interviewed three people who were at the Boston Marathon. He asked them if this bombing would keep them from coming to another marathon. All three of them said it wouldn’t. I thought to myself that although it may not deter me from going to another marathon, it would probably deter me from bringing my children.
There have been so many horrible tragedies lately. Is there anywhere we can feel safe? Movies are out, New York is out, marathons are out, school is out. All of these thoughts swirled in my head bringing with them a pit of despair in my stomach. Is this the world we live in?
When I could handle it no more, I got up and checked my email. There was a new letter from my parents who are on a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Johannesburg, South Africa. Often times they visit an orphanage there and play with the children. My mom had uploaded some new pictures on her blog. There was no letter — just some photos and one sentence, “A picture is worth a thousand words.”
Tears filled my eyes as I stared at the picture of a child who on a recent trip to Mozambique, unprompted, removed his own shoes and shirt and given them to another in need. I realized something that I had already known, but had forgotten in my sadness. This world is also good.
In most of these horrible tragedies, it was one person that made the terrible decision to hurt others — one single person. It was then that I noticed something else. In every one of these terrible tragedies, thousands of people rushed to help and save the victims.
"In most of these horrible tragedies, it was one person that made the terrible decision to hurt others... In every one of these terrible tragedies, thousands of people rushed to help and save the victims."
Teachers shielding students with their own bodies; people in a theater shielding strangers and helping lead others to safety; volunteers and first responders, many from out of state, who came in droves and lined up for miles for the chance to help in some way; volunteers and bystanders who, instead of running away, rushed immediately into the danger to help a fellow human being and stranger.
There are so many people just like that little boy. Why is it that they take no thought for themselves, but instead rush to help when there is a need, even if they don’t know the person they are helping? I believe the answer to that question is simple: They are good.
I was watching the news recently and heard about a man who is dying from a rare form of cancer and needs a bone marrow transplant immediately. A few days later, hundreds of people drove to a church and stood in line, waiting to be tested — desperately hoping they would be a match so they might save a stranger’s life.
That's the world I live in and that's the world my kids will be raised in. A world where strangers run to save other strangers. A world that is full of good.
Top image: Courtesy of Cornelia Rautenbach
Kate Lee is a Utah native and mother of three. You can read more of her writing at www.momentsofchunder.blogspot.com Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org