Last night, I laid in bed next to Clay, watching the breaking news (via Live Stream) on the laptop he held. We met September 9, 2001. I had no idea he was an ROTC cadet. And he had no idea that I would be by his side as he went off to war in Afghanistan and back again, due to the horrific events that occurred two days later.
So much of our lives have been shaped by the actions of Osama Bin Laden and his followers. And last night was no different. He was an evil man. Such an evil man. And we were pleased to see the news. But we did not yell victory, we did not shout for joy, and we certainly did not parade in the street. We thought of those who have sacrificed life, limbs, and blood for the fight. And we thought of those who are currently in country and will end up giving the ultimate sacrifice. This is a monumental occasion but it is not the end. It is nowhere near the end.
I’ve read reports of public celebration in the streets, that people are using the death of Bin Laden as an excuse to drink in excess and the spouting off rhetoric (from both sides) that no one cares to hear. More often than not, these are the people with no different connection to the victims of 9/11 or the military. Do not confuse this with patriotism. The men and woman of the military services and government agencies who have put all their effort into this fight are more than likely reflecting on this news and then going about their day, continuing to work to protect life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
A friend posted the following Proverb this morning on Facebook. I can’t think of more fitting words for today. Can you?
Proverbs 24: 17-20
17 Do not rejoice when your enemy falls,
And do not let your heart be glad when he stumbles;
18 Lest the LORD see it, and it displease Him,
And He turn away His wrath from him.
19 Do not fret because of evildoers,
Nor be envious of the wicked;
20 For there will be no prospect for the evil man;
The lamp of the wicked will be put out.
I am so proud of my husband and his sacrifice. And I am so thankful for the thousands upon thousands of military members and other entities who have dedicated themselves to our country. I am not celebrating today, but rather reflecting on the past 10+ years. An evil man is dead. And his lamp has been put out. But so much more evil persists. It is not over.