I'm sitting watching the coverage of the 9/11 tribute today and felt moved to say a few words. I have no specific connection to New York, I didnt' know anyone in the attacks, like millions of others I can remember watching the footage of the attacks 10 years ago and exactly where I was at the time, in the pharmacy of Great Ormond Strret hospital after a routine clinic visit. I can also remember the attacks in London years later and how much it upset me to see albeit on a smaller scale the devastaion of seeing a capital I have such pride in coming under attack.
Last week I posted on twitter that watching Saturday night tv, with people competing to win a million pounds and find fame on the X factor, made me sad to see people placing such high value on money and notoriety. Face after face told the cameras how they wanted the perfect bodies, designer clothes, big houses, new cars, or worst of all to find love interests, or supposed happiness if they won the big prize; as though money could buy them the important things in life.
Watching the 9/11 stories, I don't hear tales of the people in the towers rushing back to save their designer bags or worrying that their clothes were ruined, I don't think the people running for their lives were mourning the chance to ride their posh cars again and in their last moments rued the thought of never withdrawing cash from the bank again. Instead in their last moments they remembered those who loved them, spent final moments phoning home to make sure their relatives knew they were loved dearly and desperate for the chance to kiss or hold them once again. The thousands gathering to pay tribute and all the sadness and tears shed are for people not possessions. These are the things that really matter, they are the only things that count. Happy memories, are all we leave behind and every minute that passes is a chance to make those memories and show how much you love those that matter.
9/11 is just one example of these values that we should learn from. I'm no saint and often (especially right now) struggle to find light in these dark days but I do try to remember what counts.No matter how bad things are we still have today, we are lucky. God bless those who have gone and those left behind.