From the seemingly silly moments, like last Saturday when Mike & I saw a deer slip and scrape his leg on the pavement as he was running away from the busy highway. I was really worried that the deer had gotten injured, but Mike assured me that even if that was true, it was better to have a scraped leg than to be hit by a car. (Alright, true...you got me there.)
And on the same night, when we pulled into our apartment parking spot, and watched a momma bunny rabbit run away from our car, but in doing so, leaving her babies behind. I couldn't get over the fact that these baby bunnies were left huddling in fright. I was so worried that the momma was not going to come back that I watched out our bedroom window until she slowly moved from the side of the building back toward her babies.
And then there are the larger scale tragedies, like the tornadoes that have been ripping through Texas and Oklahoma. My heart breaks for everyone effected by the devastation of these storms. I can't bring myself to look at any more pictures of the damage and the scared faces of those who have lost their homes and people dear to them.
In relation to the tornadoes, I was touched by (and entirely impressed with the classiness of) Tom Bergeron (host of Dancing With the Stars) and his request that the audience hold their applause after coming back from a commercial break. In his words:
“Here’s why,” Bergeron said, on the verge of tears. “We’re a live show, and as such, occasionally we go to air in the shadow of tragic events. That happened April 15, when we went to air hours after the Boston bombing. And it’s happened again today. While we’re having a celebration here [in the ballroom], we want you to know our thoughts are with everyone who’s been affected by the devastating tornado in Oklahoma City.”
“I would, however, ask you to applaud the amazing courage of the first responders on site,” Bergeron added, visibly shaken before introducing the next dance. (source)In the same episode of Dancing With the Stars, I literally got chills and broke down in tears after watching Kellie Pickler and Derek Hough dance to a song called "Beneath Your Beautiful." This was their "freestyle dance" in the finals of the competition, and they chose to focus purely on the dance, rather than an overdone production.
After all of this happened, I read this post from Ashley at The Shine Project, and her words helped me to understand an underlying truth in the meaning of my soft heart and tears. Hard times and unimaginable tragedies can (and do) happen to any of us. That's why it's so easy to feel heartbroken for others who are suffering - we understand each other. Maybe we haven't walked the exact same road, but we understand how hard life can be, and how important it is to keep fighting and supporting each other through those hard times. In Ashley's words:
Tonight I am praying for peace worldwide and comfort for all those who are struggling. Indeed, I know God has a plan in everything, and I pray that He keeps my heart soft so that I can continue to connect with others, even if just through small moments with a deer on the side of the road and a dance performance on a reality TV show.I once heard a quote that said, I may not know what the future holds, but I know who holds the future. That stands truer today than ever. I know there's a plan for each of our lives. Don't fight it. Grow with the hard steps, and connect with the people around you. They have things to offer you that you can't find anywhere else, that's why God has given us to each other. We need each other to survive. (source)