Words cannot begin to describe the terrible tragedy that has befallen Japan . With thousands already confirmed dead, and the possibility of tens of thousands who are still yet un-accounted for, who could soon join those ranks, this could well be one of the most devastating disasters to befall mankind. Yet still to be calculated is the cost, not only in human lives, but in infrastructure and to the global economy as a whole. Until a few months ago, Japan was the second biggest economy in the world. Second. Next to the United States.
Disasters like this aren’t suppose to happen to nations like Japan. Japan is rich and prosperous. A modern society. In many ways, the most technically advanced society on the planet. Disasters like this are suppose to happen to poor nations. Poor countries like Haiti. People who can’t take care of themselves. Whose daily lives would comfortably fit in some long, past century. And yet what Japan does is to remind us all, that nature doesn’t take sides. Nature doesn’t pick the haves from the have-nots; Rich from poor; Christian from Jew, from Muslim; Phd from GED. Nature is blind to those labels and categories we put upon ourselves and conveniently place others in.
What happened in Japan should remind us of what is truly important in our lives. That things like family and friends; health; religion…these are the things in life that should matter most to us. It should remind us that life is short. Too very, very short. And the material things that we fight over, and desire, and lust for, are so un-important in the greater scheme of things. What good is all the money those deceased wealthy people had doing them now? How really bad was life to those who were facing financial difficulties? I would argue that those wealthy would gladly trade all that wealth for a single breath of life now. That those who had fallen on bad times would gladly settle for a lifetime of those bad times now, just to be with the ones they love.
The Tsunami that hit Japan should focus our attention on ourselves, and on those around us that need us more than we can imagine. They can be perfect strangers, or sons and daughters. We should thank God for keeping us safe, and count our blessings. And we should pray for, and help the people of Japan. Once a foe, now a friend, but always a member of the human kind.