Raise Your Gaze finally has entered the New Year! Hmm, this is the first post here of 2015. It’s just as well Yours Truly hadn’t made a resolution to absolutely cut out procrastination, or it would have been broken already!
But still, now that we’re here I must say that I’m still finding positive gaze-raising incidents occurring every day.
Even in the midst of terror and horrific acts of violence, deeds of a positive nature sometimes – and often do – occur.
For example, in Paris, France:
*While radical Islamist jihadist Amedy Coulibaly held shoppers and staff hostage in fear and four people he’d shot already lay dead and bleeding, courageous gaze-raising action unfolded in the basement.
Lassana Bathily, a young Malian Muslim immigrant, demonstrated great presence of mind. Switching off power to the stockroom’s cold storage, located in the basement, he hid a group of shoppers inside. He then sneaked outside via a fire escape to speak to the police, but risked being shot to death, as police mistook him for the killer. They forced him to the ground and handcuffed him. That was cleared up and Bathily provided them with the key required to open the store’s blinds and launch their assault, which led to the termination of the hostage crisis.
Upon hearing news of despicable acts of murder and terror, anger and indignation mount and eyebrows either rise or scrunch, to deepen the furrows in worried, perplexed brows.
The gaze of noble and honourable eyes rises in gratitude and wonder at the thoughtful, caring deeds of Good Samaritans–
as in this case of the Muslim worker, employed in a Jewish business establishment.
Let’s offer a prayer for that young man who played such an important role in the care of others, since his own safety may now be at stake.
Other gaze-raisers have surfaced in connection with the case.
*One of the workers who died in the incident at the store was a 22 year-old Jewish man, Yohan Cohen. A Moroccan immigrant, Amine, said of Cohen that he was “amazing, friendly . . . who respects people.”
“I’m Muslim and he’s Jewish. But there’s such respect between us.
We’re like brothers.”
May our hearts as well as our gaze rise in thanksgiving for the good, and also in prayer for victims and would-be perpetrators of such crimes, and for a change in the circumstances that lead to them.
This backyard snapshot includes our yard and our neighbour’s, too. Today it speaks to me of the tranquility of a neighbourhood at peace. I could wish that people everywhere were able to experience such a blessing, and for it never to be shattered.
*Credit: These accounts are based on online reports by Michel Euler / Associated Press, and also from CBC News, January 11/15. Accessed Jan. 16/15.
Positive reader feedback for “Raise Your Gaze . . . Mindful Musings of a Grateful Heart.” Some have purchased second and third copies to give to family members and friends.
Ebook version now available: Raise Your Gaze … EbookNow out: Raise Your Gaze – Mindful Musings of a Grateful Heart collection of 52 articles from P-Pep! column, sprinkled with Words to Bless. Inspirational; some biographical. 190 pp. ISBN: 978-0-9920074-2-3 Available from Angel Hope Publishing: Angelhopepublishing@glynisbelec.com ; www.glynisbelec.com Amazon.com ; Amazon.ca Ebook version now available.
Peter A. Black is a freelance writer in Southwestern Ontario, and is author of “Parables from the Pond” – a children’s / family book (mildly educational, inspirational in orientation, character reinforcing. 39 stories, 232 pp, b/w illustrations. Finalist – Word Alive Press. ISBN: 1897373-21-X. List price $15.99. Available through bookstores, the author and at Amazon.com and Amazon.ca
The book has found a place in various settings with a readership ranging from kids to senior adults. His inspirational column, P-Pep! appears weekly in The Guide-Advocate (of Southwestern Ontario). His articles have appeared in 50 Plus Contact and testimony, and several newspapers in Ontario. ~~+~~