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These Things Happen

March 23rd, 2024

What does a consoler mean by, “These things happen”? Here we are at the end of it all, dear friend, and one can only express that for all of our struggles, our yearning to control, somehow the mysteries and foibles of our imperfect world have eluded our understanding once again. But fret not! Our circumstance does not indicate our ineptitude. It may seem as though our coarse handling of events belies one true reality: our incompetence. If we are rational, logical, forthwith individuals – and by individuals I mean to say those beings with agency – then how, compatriot, could the course of events been so, so beyond our plans?

A lover has slipped through our grasp, disappearing between the cracks that appeared because our grip was so tight. The means of our defeat arising from our earnest effort to victory. A family bond – that unbreakable thing that has been endowed by all humanity with sacredness, by God who seeks to impress upon our minds the weight of His love by giving up His Son and calling himself Our Father, and by blood itself without which nothing else could weigh more than a thimble – has shattered and lays broken at our feet. Our regrets pile before us like a great mountain. Our contemporaries tell us to forget any inkling of sorrow, yet we cannot help but feel kinship with Atlas, excepting that we have condemned ourselves.

How did we find ourselves here? My brothers, I have an answer and I have none at all. There exists those circumstances too great for any person; they find their ways into all of our days. They creep along, nipping at our heels. We know they are there, certainly, but how is that any good? If you know the ground is beneath your shoes, does that mean you can walk upon it when you find yourself 5,000 feet up?

So, friend, give your shoulders a rest and consider a brief solace. Repose may be deadly and acquiescence is synonymous with death, but never remit yourself to forget that which we all must learn in our days. The lesson that can never be studied in the middle, the lesson that is a fait accompli: “These things happen.”