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Another Meeting on the Road to Calvary

September 14, 2012

From time to time I encounter a kindred spirit, one who shares my heart.  By the time I had read part way through the Introduction to Richard Frechette’s Haiti:  the God of Tough Places and of Burnt Men, I knew I had found one.

“The salmon, in an amazing display of instinct, fights its way upstream past hungry bears, through drowned branches, against crushing rocks and shearing currents, in order to arrive torn and exhausted at its place of birth.  The point of ending becomes the point of beginning, and life is born of sacrifice.

The autumn leaves blaze forth a dazzling array of colors, at precisely the moment when they are losing their life sap, and must soon cede to forceful winds, bitter cold, and the lessening light.  In this dramatic surrender to winter, life recedes with a show of glory, and then waits ever so patiently in the root.  When light lengthens again and breezes become balmy, there will be an exuberant burst of all the forms and colors of life.

These are but two of the many wonders which teach us the magnificent resilience that is the hallmark of life.  This resilience often underlies tough realities, and requires that the promised glory await its season.  What is revealed is a mysterious deep-seated determination for not just survival, but for full participation in and passion for life.  The evidence is there for sacrifice, flair and gusto.  Transcending the tough challenges brings metamorphosis and regeneration.

It is true for fish and for leaves.  It is also true for people.”

 

“For we believers, this is the unfailing light of grace, ever present and faithful, and fiercely loyal to carrying out God’s great work:  renewing the face of the earth, renewing the embattled human heart.”

Thank you, Richard, for your words.  Perhaps one day I will have the good fortune to meet you, in Haiti or elsewhere.

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