This sweet man was standing beside me on the subway when we left the 911 Memorial Museum last week. I noticed his name tag and asked him about working at the museum. He proudly said, "I work three days a week there. I'm a survivor."
He went on to tell me the story of how he was working on the 48th floor of the second twin tower when the plane crashed and how hard it was to get down all of the floors to the ground. 28 minutes after he was out, his tower collapsed.
Then he showed me the tiny Bible that he had in his bag. On the first page, he keeps his picture from 9/11 with the buildings burning behind him. Then he turned the page, and I saw he had the names of probably thirty people neatly printed in tiny writing. He said, "These are my friends who worked in the towers who didn't make it out. I keep this with me always."
Noticing his accent, I asked where he was from originally, and he smiled and said, "From Greece, but I've been here 50 years. I'm American."
This thorn tree is down in the bottom below our house. Although we've lived here for about five years and go down there on a regular basis, I'd never even noticed it until about a month ago when the dangerously sharp thorns caught my eye. Ever since then, I've marveled at those thorns each time I've passed by the tree... yet somehow I'd overlooked the buds.... But today when we went down there, there was no way to overlook the gorgeous bursting white blooms! If you think about it, life is a lot like this thorn tree. It's so easy to get caught up in life's problems and only focus on the thorns. But if we look at it in a different way, the thorns have their own unique beauty.... kind of like stormy days... it would be hard to appreciate the sunshine if we didn't have the rain... if it weren't for my bad days/ faults/ mistakes/ disappointments, I wouldn't and couldn't truly appreciate the good.