Sunday, November 10, 2013

Life is Beautiful

“… he is not God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive." (Lk 20:38)
I was drawn to this verse in today's Gospel and yet, I was not sure of what I wanted to say about it or how to put into words what I was feeling.
Then Etty Hillesum kept popping into my head.
Etty Hillesum was a Jewish woman who died in Auschwitz in 1943 at the age of 29. She kept a diary that has been turned into a book called An Interrupted Life. What inspired me most about this powerful book was Etty's attitude about life.
Here are just 2 of her quotes:

"I feel as if I were the guardian of a precious slice of life with all the responsibility that entails. There are moments when I feel like giving up or giving in but I soon rally again and do my duty as I see it: to keep the spark of life inside me ablaze."

"It still all comes down to the same thing. Life is beautiful and I believe in God. And I want to be there right in the thick of what people call "horror" and still be able to say: Life is beautiful."

Seems to me that Etty knew better than many of us that life is a gift from God. What is remarkable is that she was able to see that life was beautiful, even in the middle of so much fear and suffering. And she trusted in the Lord to be with her, right up to the end.
I hope that I can be like Etty. I hope that I can always say, no matter what, "Life is beautiful and I believe in God. And I want to be there right in the thick of what people call "horror" and still be able to say: Life is beautiful."


Lord, help me to see life is beautiful no matter what is going on in my life. Help me to keep that spark of life within me ablaze! Thank you, Lord, for my life. And for people like Etty, who remind us of what life and love are all about. Amen.


edited from post Oct. 2010

6 comments :

Michael said...

What a great reminder, Colleen. It is so easy to get caught up in our little tiny problems, and miss the gift that God has given us!

God Bless you

Colleen said...

Amen! Thanks Michael!

Michael Seagriff said...

Barb,

Beautiful soul piercing reflection.
May we be gifted with Etty's eyes, wisdom, courage, heart and soul.

Colleen said...

Thank you Michael!

Barb Schoeneberger said...

That sounds like a book I'd like to read. Imagine having that much wisdom at only 29 years of age!d

Colleen said...

Barb, it is an awesome book. I have read it about 3 times! Her faith grew and grew and she would read the gospels every day! Just amazing.