Why Try?

Someone I know has had an agonizing time trying to get a family member out of a foreign country. The specifics must be withheld, for good reason. Just know it has been a grueling, potentially life-and-death ordeal based on politics and power.

It’s a case of individuals imploring national government, the small guys rebuffed by powers that be, living conditions prime for contracting diseases, a divide of thousands of miles, travel restrictions, and complicated laws. Add to that finite personal resources of time and finances, and it’s been two long years of herculean efforts going nowhere.

Meanwhile, life must go on, including caring for other family and responsibilities, and when able, attending the same vocation-related meeting I do. Yesterday we were mid-discussion when someone rounded the basement stairway to join us. We looked up to see our friend had arrived.

But it was not just one person standing there …

The wonderful, impossible, beautiful, astonishing, too-good-to-be-true TRUTH of it sank in slowly …

The aforementioned family member caught up in international politics was there, too. At our meeting. They were together. A two-year nightmare was over.

Every second of that realization was unforgettable — they were settled into the empty space next to me long before I absorbed it all. They were living (and touchable!) proof that situations appearing hopeless can change for the good in an instant. And when they do, unspeakable joy is the result. That joy is contagious, too — I sure caught it. I can attest that it is a privilege to know enough of the struggle to appreciate the victory.

Their reunion represented all things right in a world too often wrong. They were examples of why we should all cling to hope, fight for justice and life, ask for help in the difficult battles, and never give up.

Dramatic turnarounds do happen. I witnessed one yesterday, and oh, was it good.

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