I feel like I have so much to say and yet nothing to add.
I was up in the middle of the night and thinking about how proud we are of our daughter. She is doing so well in school, her writing is phenomenal, and she is simply a wonderful person. I was just sitting there dreaming about what she will do, who she is growing into, and then I stopped.
We had dreams for Mack too.
None of us know what will happen, none of us know if we will grow up, move on, or even live beyond today. Should we still have dreams for our daughter?
Yes. Of course. I shook my head, as if to scatter the thoughts. Of course we continue to live and dream. Because while Jesus was right, today’s trouble is enough for today (), we cannot stop living and living means loving and hoping, caring and looking to the future.
Purpose is incredibly powerful. It keeps us moving and thinking about something other than ourselves. Of course that purpose must be directed at something healthy, holy even, in order for it to be beneficial to us and others. But when we have no purpose or, rather, when we feel we have no purpose that is when we become morose, depressed, and despondent.
This is why setting up the Fund has been so good for us, the community, and the men that it is benefiting. It has given us something to do, to be proactive about. We are able to focus the incredible energy that comes with grieving into something positive.For the kids the Teepee was incredible in this regard. They were able to rally to the cause, raise money, and then they get to play on it!
But it is not just about keeping busy, although there is great value in that too, it is purposeful. That purpose? To remember and honor Mack, to provide a way for others to participate in that, and to support Penn State soccer players. This is not some pitch on my part for your to support the Fund, but rather to show how many different people are affected and in how many different ways this has been helpful.
Jesus’ injunction (and my distaste for New Year’s resolutions) does not prohibit planning or even dreaming. But we are to set aside the worry. If we had worried that Mack would get a concussion playing in goal we would have missed out on so many incredible moments that now allow us to rejoice in the memory of him. If we had worried about the sleep we would be losing because we were getting up a 4 am to drive to a soccer tournament in Pittsburgh Mack would have missed out on incredible, life-changing experiences, that now are so precious. And if we worry now about whether I will live to see my daughter graduate from college (or with her PhD, no pressure hon) then I cannot enjoy reading her fiction now, playing chess with her, watching movies and critiquing them together, and traveling to new and exciting places, taking pictures that will be treasured, perhaps long after we are all gone.
So we set aside worry, but we continue to move forward in hope. After all,
We are not among those who shrink back and so are lost, but among those who have faith and so are saved. Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. —