Rod Dreher

From an e-mail someone who attended Ruthie’s benefit concert sent to me this morning:

I cried on my way home after having tears when I pulled into the benefit and saw all of the cars filling the parking lot. The next morning, I was trying to tell my husband about everything, and I cried then too. I told him that I didn’t have the words to explain the feelings that I had. The only way I could explain it was that it was the greatest outpouring of love and faith that I have ever had the opportunity to witness. I told him that if I had learned one thing through all of this, it was that I didn’t want to be angry anymore at anyone; I want to be able to love certain people that I have had a hard time loving; I want to be able to find that good in everyone that I encounter and try to allow that to shine through on everyone.

Ruthie, the brown-eyed girl, made that happen. So did all the good people who staged this show, and who came out to support my sister. My correspondent also reported that her teenage daughter, who also attended the concert, said to her the next day that she wanted to get in touch with her father, from whom she’s been estranged since her parents divorce years ago. My correspondent reached out to her ex-husband and explained that their daughter wanted to be surrounded by the love that she saw embracing Ruthie at the concert (which is there every day for her), but was afraid of her father rejecting her. Later that day, for the first time in a long time, father and daughter talked — and now he’s going to take some time off this summer to spend with his child, whom he hasn’t seen in ages.
“So again, another cry,” reports the grateful mother. “I don’t think I’ve cried this much in years.”
I was trying on Sunday to come to terms with this terrible calamity that has befallen my sister, and to find meaning in the cross she’s been given, and which she accepts with a peaceful heart. The meaning comes in stories like that one, in which a person, confronted by unlimited love and boundless generosity, has an epiphany, and changes her outlook, and her life. The meaning comes in a story like a child alienated from her father seeing what unlimited love looks like, and wanting to be reconciled to her dad — and in him responding in love to her, after years of dryness.
These are miracles. These are not the miracles we pray for, but they are miracles all the same. They are not the miracles we who love Ruthie and pray for her healing want, but maybe, just maybe, they are the miracles we need. Ruthie believes that. Our bodies fail, but love never does. It bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. You can look it up.

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