One of the challenges in writing is to light upon words that adequately convey an emotion’s intensity. January 20, 2021, Inauguration Day here in the USA, was an emotional day. The day’s events rekindled the feeling I experienced during the ceremony when I swore my allegiance to the USA as a citizen, May 15, 2015. Watching the inauguration and well-planned events unfold throughout the day in Washington DC, amidst the unique challenges of this season, stirred many more emotions. This, the day after, as I write, I have been searching for adequate words to express what I felt. As often happens during these word searches, Scriptures come to mind and give me context. These contexts assist in my endeavor to source the elusive terms. The eighth Psalm came to mind first. I think of this passage whenever I come to the point of amazement or astonishment at humanity’s positive accomplishments in its various fields of endeavor. I meditated on this Psalm, and one of the words for which I was searching surfaced. The is word “marvel.” For me, January 20, 2021, was a day full of marvel. It was marvelous on so many levels.
The Psalmist is in awe of his Creator and the works of his Creator’s hands. In his wonderment, he is somewhat baffled by his Creator’s attention toward humankind as well as his Creator’s providential care for humanity. Upon further reflection on humankind’s nature, the Psalmist speaks to God. He thinks he has an insight that resolves his bafflement.
“Could this be the reason You have such regard and care for humanity?
As the Supreme Monarch of creation, You have made humans a little lower in royal stature to yourself. You clothe each human being with your royal garments of glory and honor. Thus endowed, You trust humanity to exercise appropriate reign over Your created works.”
When I marvel at some facet of positive human expression or accomplishment, I recognize humanity’s royal position and divine endowments. A human being is a marvelous creation capable of inspiring marvel in fellow human beings through their positive achievements! It would be nice to think that our Creator is inspired to marvel at us as well.
Of course, human beings are quite capable of betraying their regal stature and falling short of their royal endowments. The contrast between Washington DC’s events between January 6, 2021, and January 20, 2021, is quite stark. January 6 represented the worst. January 20 was marvelous.
Inauguration Day marked that day when Covid deaths in the USA exceeded 400,000. Four hundred thousand deaths due to Covid in just one year. That is quite sobering. The marvelous day was also sobering. I marvel at humanity’s ability to celebrate amid grief and to grieve amid celebration. Kudos to the leadership acumen and fatherly heart of President Joseph Biden, who recognized that not only could we do that, we needed to do that.
As I write, I am sitting here on the home patio where my parents retired in 1984. The most recent occupant, my youngest brother Brad, passed away in July. Although his cause of death was not Covid, his was an untimely death. I grieve with those who are grieving their loved ones’ untimely deaths. Yesterday I celebrated with you amid grief, and I grieved with you amid celebration!