I felt the ground shake early this morning, around 1:15 am. I felt the foundation of my home tremble: the walls around me, the bed I laid in, the second story floor I later stood in. After my initial confusion, I soon realized it was an earthquake.
I thought about all those places that had suffered through an earthquake. I thought about the damages made, the lives lost and the grief some still struggle to survive through. I thought… it could be my turn now. And I was thankful. Not because I was eager to take on a natural disaster, but because the youngest members of my family were not in residence. They wouldn’t have to face an earthquake and bear through its consequences. I was grateful for that.
In a matter of seconds, the quake was over. I was praying. Nothing was destroyed. No buildings shattered, no roads splintered, no lives lost. It was reported as a 5.7 magnitude earthquake. Later in the morning, I woke up to find everything normal. Nothing had changed except my awareness of the tremor, and the knowledge that it could have been much worse. I couldn’t help but to think… the world grows smaller every day. Earthquakes have rocked across continents, affecting nations and devastated people worldwide. Some recent recorded events are:
• Italy – April 6 2009
• Haiti – January 12 2010
• Chile – February 27 2010
• China – April 14 2010
We have seen the damages, the tears, the deaths, the devastation and the look of desolation in the eyes of some of these victims. Because of that, we, people from different cultures and upbringings, come together in a time of despair. We are brought together by grief, by fear, by the outcome of violence and destruction. We share pain, we share loss and we share the overwhelming feeling of being small that comes from such distressing circumstances. Instinctively, we unite, and with our differences thrust aside, we pray and help one another. Consequently, the balance of humanity is restored in exchange for a heavy price. I say this because, even though the method in which we are reminded is a frightening disaster, in the end, we remember to value one another as true human beings.