As a native of Oklahoma City, I’ve been profoundly moved by the tragic events my hometown has endured over the past two decades. The 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal Building and the devastation caused by the three Moore tornadoes have surely tested Oklahoma’s mettle. And I’m proud to say the people of the Sooner state are still standing. Standing tall and straight at that.
Adversity calls on each of us from time to time. In that regard, I believe there are some valuable lessons coming out of Moore. Too many to try mentioning them all here, but as I watched the coverage on CNN it became obvious to me that:
- We’re all heroes-in-waiting. No capes, no superpowers, just people refusing to allow someone else to suffer. Funny how mundane differences of gender, race, and politics faded under the dust and debris of a natural disaster.
- There may come a day when I’ll have to depend on the kindness of strangers. When that day comes, I won’t let pride stand in the way. And, therefore, I’m going to do a better job of paying it forward. I’m going to stop assuming someone else will be the Good Samaritan.
- I didn’t see anybody frantically searching for their flat-screen televisions or their jet skis. Our lives, ultimately, are defined by the people with whom we share them. The panic and tears I saw were for missing loved ones, not for missing things.
Dear reader, I sincerely hope the worst thing life brings you is the occasional bad blog. Otherwise, I hope you find inspiration in the courage and perseverance being displayed right now by the people of Oklahoma.