Thursday, April 28, 2011

What Makes You Feel Safe?

Last night, we had terrible storms across Georgia. Hannah was downtown at school and I told her that she either needed to come home right then, or make the decision to stay downtown for the night. To my immense relief, she decided to come home, and I felt safer once she walked in the door. I also felt safer once I had found Jenny the Extra Cat and gotten her inside.

Tonight when I was walking the dog, a police officer drove into the neighborhood and stopped to talk to me for a minute. This was Officer McBride, who patrols our neighborhood every week, has joined our neighborhood online forum and makes helpful posts and has even given us his phone number in case we have questions. I had never met him before, but I had certainly heard of him and read his posts. A few nights ago, Hannah and I were walking and another officer stopped to talk to us. While we may not see a complete cessation of crime in our neighborhood, I feel safer knowing that members of the Dekalb County Police Department take a personal interest in our neighborhood, and have taken the time to get to know the neighbors.

I was on an airplane a couple of weeks ago, landing in the middle of a strong thunderstorm. I honestly wondered if I was going to die. I didn't feel safe at all, at least until we were completely on the ground and the doors of the plane opened. I did a lot of praying during that landing, and I'd love to be able to say that knowing that God was there with me made me feel safer. But my complete and total fear obscured any peace that I might have felt. Kind of like how the disciples in the storm-tossed boat must have felt while Jesus slept, I suppose.

But I'm lucky, as are most of the people I know. We live in a country that isn't torn by violent internal political strife. While I'm not wealthy, I have enough to feed and clothe my family, and to keep a roof over our heads while we watch television shows on AT&T U-Verse. So, all things considered, I'm safe. And I'm thankful. And next time I'm on a storm-tossed plane, maybe I'll remember that God really is with me and I should have some faith!

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