The lights go down, the music starts to play and simultaneously 1o,000 voices cheer because their favorite band has taken the stage. Lights. Noise. Excitement. Joy.
In that moment, ten thousand screaming fans are all mesmerized by the same familiar sound as they heard the day before on their ipod. But this community of fans doesn’t necessarily know they’re a community. They left their everyday lives to celebrate their favorite music. It’s all too easy to be a fan and to celebrate with others even if a connection has never been made before. Ever been to a sporting event?
We scored? High five the guy next to you! Don’t know him? Who cares! You’re linked as fans of the same team!
After all, it’s easy to be a fan. It’s easy to celebrate when good things happen in our lives and in our friend’s lives. The promotion at work, the news that cancer is in remission, the good grade on a test in school, etc. We know how to celebrate (CAKE!). We know how to cast a spotlight on the good things in our lives.
But what about the shadows. What about those who don’t have anything in life to celebrate? Are we willing to mourn with those who mourn? My wife and I have found that there is so much secretiveness to sorrow. We’ve been through a lot in the couple years that we’ve been married and while this isn’t the time to write about it, there may be a time in the future. As we shared our story with close friends, we found that there were many people who shared the same painful stories that we shared.
We know how to cast a spotlight on the good things in our lives.
You see when we cast that spotlight on the good things, we hide our sorrows in the shadows because we know that no one wants to venture into the shadows and deal with real life. But in the shadows we leave behind the fleeting joys of the moment and when we mourn with those who mourn, we find out what true community is.
So may we open our lives to others and if we are so strong, may we venture into the shadows so that we can comfort those who feel as though all hope is lost.