Day 23: Mourn With Those Who Mourn

It’s very eerie to walk the grounds of what used to be a blood bath. A Bastille Parade worker sweeps the ground of garbage as he does every year. But this time he has tears in his aged face as he picks up te bottles and cans off the street. Hundreds of bouquets lay upon the ground in remembrance of lost friends. Flowers on the ground to remind all visitors how finite life is. Cameras are everywhere reporting to the entire world the death of many innocent people. On the day we arrived in Nice my father sent me a message with part of a bible verse, “mourn with those who mourn…” Romans 12:15. 

It’s true, when you are in a city that has just experienced such tragedy, you need to be sympathetic. You may look at the beautiful city as much as you like, but you can tell by how the shops are closed and how the waiters serve your food without a smile, that this in no ordinary time in France. 

Tears are an important part of life. From the beginning of this journey I wanted to become a wiser person. And through mourning we are comforted and come to appreciate life more. 

The largest teddy bear I had ever seen sat in the corner of a display of bouquets and candles for the departed. I hated to think that the teddy bear was there because a child had been killed. I thanked God that we were alive. And my perspective changed. I realized how fortunate I am to have been diagnosed with diabetes at the age of 9 and not leukemia. 

The rest of the bible verse goes “mourn with those how mourn, and rejoice with those who rejoice”. There is nothing that opens your eyes more to the gift of life than the absence of it. 


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