Wednesday, October 17

Service & Family

I have entered entered a phase of my life where I am developing a new understanding of service, especially with respect to family. Lillian and I are really looking forward to meeting with all of the parents together in December. My parents are making a big effort and sacrificing a lot of resources to make it out to Xin Jiang.
My sister might come and stay at our apartment for a couple of months next year!
Down the road a little, Lillian and I are seriously considering (almost firmly decided on) inviting her parents to move in with us after they retire, and stay a few months every year in the meanwhile. They are really worried about being a burden, but I think it will be so good, especially for our children to always have their grandparents around. What a blessing! I remember when I was growing up in Martinique and my grandmother stayed with us for some two years. That was so special.
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Thursday, October 4


Some memories about my parents:

When I was two years old, I walked with my parents into the Mashriqu'l-Adhkar (Baha'i House of Worship) in Wilmette (near Chicago). As I looked up to the ceiling, my mother explained to me the meaning of "The Greatest Name" ("O Glory of the All-Glorious")

At four years old, I got sick one afternoon, and fell asleep after taking some medicine. I woke up crying in the middle of the night. My dad immediately came to me and gave me some dinner that my family had put aside for when I woke up. I was utterly comforted.

Around the same age, as I was walking with my mom near the Savane park in downtown Fort-de-France, I fell on the ground hurt my hand and got some gravel under my skin. I remember being completely reassured by my mother's love and care.

I have a handful of memories like this, of simple things that happened to me when I was a child. These events are proof of the love of my parents, and a source of strength to this day. No one can plan these moments. There were surely many others when they exerted much greater effort for my safety and happiness, but they can't choose which I remember. It's both empowering and daunting to know this: our smallest efforts can have the greatest effect; our slightest thoughtless act may truly let someone down.