An inspiration and a challenge

I watched President Obama’s speech at the memorial service and I cried. For the parents of Christina. For everyone who was killed. It might have struck home more because of the violence in Omaha. What touched me most deeply is when Obama spoke of how death of a loved one makes us look backward and forward.

Obama said: “So sudden loss causes us to look backward -– but it also forces us to look forward; to reflect on the present and the future, on the manner in which we live our lives and nurture our relationships with those who are still with us.

We may ask ourselves if we’ve shown enough kindness and generosity and compassion to the people in our lives. Perhaps we question whether we’re doing right by our children, or our community, whether our priorities are in order.

We recognize our own mortality, and we are reminded that in the fleeting time we have on this Earth, what matters is not wealth, or status, or power, or fame -– but rather, how well we have loved– and what small part we have played in making the lives of other people better.

I want to be reminded of this every day.