Sunday, April 27, 2008

Peace Through the Heart of a Child

Have you ever heard the saying, "When GOD closes one door, he opens another."? How many of us really believe that, or do we dwell on the door which has just closed forgetting to look for the one which might have just opened? I know I have had many doors closed in my past, and many more opened. Some doors remain closed forever, some reopen later and some just never quite close completely. In thinking about closed and opened doors, can we not go back and see a path of events that have led us to where we are today?

Baking cookies this morning for my newest adopted soldier, my thoughts took the path as to how I got to baking these cookies. How far back could I go to 'doors' that led up to this? I stopped at my first marriage in 1971 and the divorce that followed in 1982. I suppose I could go further, but that was as much as my brain was going to handle without a headache. As devastated as I was over that divorce, it was a closed door that ended up opening so many more, and yes closing some. I have met many people. I have made many friends. I have given love, lost love and found new love in many different forms. Some are a memory, some I will carry forever in my heart.

Through all of these doors I came to be the 'angel' for a soldier stationed in Afghanistan. We have become great friends. I have felt his pain, despair, loneliness, and fear as he continued and then extended his tour to last several more months. His reason, completely unselfish. While in Afghanistan, he met and befriended a small child, Soman. She was ill when he met her. Being the good man he is, he would sneak her milk and juice. As he related the story to me, I took up the cause sending him boxes of food items, toys, vitamins, tylenol, etc. With the goodness of the hearts of him and the other soldiers, his wife and myself we were able to get her back into good health and back into school. The klinker came when an Afghani man decided he was not liking the 'giving' of these Americans. He wanted to 'take over' the delivery of items to her. Well, we all knew what would happen to them. To make a long story short, Soman was no longer allowed to receive anything from us. My soldier's e-mails to me were filled with anger and sadness.

We never hear about the good things that happen in Afghanistan or Iraq. The MSM is full of the latest suicide bomber, the latest uprising of terrorist movement. How often do we hear of the people who are able to travel without the protection of the military? How often do we hear of the schools that are being built or reopened...the hospitals? Do we hear of clean water supplies, markets that are reopened? NO! Should we wonder why our military personal become so frustrated?

With my soldier's redeployment a door will close (well...not completely!), but another one has opened. First, 'something' happened that will again allow Soman to receive items from my self and others. Wink...smiles! Second, a daycare center has been started in the area where the soldiers, who will remain deployed, are stationed. A daycare center? Could that mean people are working more? Could that mean things are better? The door that has opened for me, the 'needs' that are required for them....for the children.

As war continues in both countries, children are affected beyond something we as Americans will hopefully never have to experience. As these children grow up they will see what is around them much as our own children see, in say, our inner cities. The environment can have an astounding affect on a child. Will they see nothing but war, violence, that America and the rest of the world must be destroyed as everything else is evil? Is it possible one child can be turned around to see there IS another world out there that does not condem their lives to that of despair? Can they have their eyes opened to a life that is worth more than a suicide bomber? As we look to our children for our future, should we not look to these children as the future of their countries and if we are to sacrifice for their future also, should we not at least do our utmost to show them there is 'better' for them than what they already have?

My new 'door' is to help the current group of 'Wolf Pack' with needs for that daycare center, be it toys, blankets, pillows, diapers, clothing...whatever it takes. Maybe by touching the heart of a child, just maybe it will be Soman, or other children, who will be the catalyst for peace in the future. Maybe by showing them there is good that happens even in the midst of evil, they will band together in the be the 'future.

Maybe there can be peace, through the heart of a child.

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