Since September 11, 2001, the phrase “Homeland Security” has become part of our vocabulary. As a nation, those of us who lived through those days suffered a kind of shared trauma. We lost a lot that day, mostly the lives of 2996 fellow citizens who started that day like the rest of us. We still feel the trauma of that loss. Soon, on this the 15th year since the attack, we will once again hear names read and bells toll.
We lost other things that day as well. We lost some liberties. I have worn a multi-purpose tool (a leatherman) on my belt for close to 20 years. It has pliers, drivers and an assortment of blades. I use to travel with it on airplanes. I can’t do that anymore (though I’m glad to surrender that right for the safety of others).
We are now more watched than before, greater surveillance dominates airports and cities. We’ve had other attacks as well and with each one we may get a little more nervous about travel or exposing ourselves to perceived risks. In my own city of Orlando, the day after 9/11 – 9/12 will be the three-month anniversary of the Pulse massacre.
A sense of our own security has been taken from us. We can feel unsafe anywhere. In places we used to consider fortresses we are learning that anything can happen anywhere. Much of the current presidential campaign is focused on this issue.
Can we regain “Homeland Security?” I think so when home becomes a place where we love one another. Will there be threats? Sure, I live in Florida and twelve summers ago three hurricanes rolled over us in less than six weeks. It could be weather, terrorism, crime or even personal calamity that threatens our safety and security.
Life happens: sometimes it is tough, other times we are soaring. The security we seek is not in a place. There are no walls tall enough, no defenses strong enough to withstand all the world’s power. There is another home.
Our home is found in the journey itself. We are born, we live, we die. This is life. Life isn’t measured by what we own or possess. A great life is measured in how it is lived. We wake-up, we go about our day, we come home. When we are threatened by disaster, disease, even death itself. We gather with those we love and by God’s grace we move forward one step at a time. It is a journey, as we said in an earlier post a quest. Don’t give up, take courage, you are not alone. We can set aside the fears that would paralyze us and work for a greater good.
Though there may be dangers all around you in your journey to home, you can experience “Homeland Security”: a peace, rest, faith, confident trust, a sense of security that is not measured by the number of security cameras surrounding you. It is measured by the contentment in your own heart and soul.
Ships were not made for the harbor. They are built to traverse the rough seas. You’re life was not built for safety and comfort. Yet amidst the tossing of life’s storms, you can experience a homeland security in your soul that guides and comforts you along your journey. In life there will be risks, there may be a storm or two but don’t let that keep you from the adventure.
A Canterbury Tale
The Rev. Victoria L. Collins, Deacon
“I live on the Space Coast, so I can walk out in front of my house and watch the rocket launches soar heavenward. Canterbury is a “launch site” too – for spiritual learning and growth, challenging experiences, and new, life-enriching adventures.
My personal adventure began in 2005 when a notice arrived announcing the first Icon Writing Retreat to be held in August. I read the information, looked at my husband and announced, “This is something I’m supposed to do”. Although I had loved and studied icons for many years, I had never dreamed of writing one; but this was my call. I am now an advanced student, and I put aside money each year to return to this “sacred space” to live in community with precious friends and new students as we work, study, worship and live together in the presence of the Saints.
Only the freedom from daily duties and concerns that Canterbury’s wonderful staff and facilities provide, could create the space and time needed to focus on the creation of these icons which give visible testimony to God’s Word and His love!”
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