You know, when you hear about things going on around the world, it can be hard to remember that beyond the news stories are normal people living normal lives.
For example, we had a good friend over for dinner. She works most of they year teaching in St. Petersburg, Russia. Of course, in the last year, we’ve seen a lot of tension between the United States and Russia in response to the situation in Ukraine and what appears to be a restart of the Cold War. I asked her about it and she said that she had not seen any impact in her daily life.
Likewise, we have neighbors who are Palestinian. A couple of months ago, we noticed that we hadn’t seen them in a while. It turns out that they were in Bethlehem visiting family.
Stories like this give me hope. There’s something about the idea that, with all tension with Russia and all the horrific news that comes out of Israel and the occupied territories, people can go on living their lives and even travel to visit family. It just seems so normal and universal and human.
It doesn’t mean that all is well. It doesn’t mean that the new stories we hear are not important. But it does mean that there are lives, like ours in some ways but different in others, being lived. People are safely going about their day or greeting relatives or celebrating birthdays and holidays and paying bills and making dinner and putting kids to bed and doing a hundred other normal things.