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Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Like Son, Like Father

George Hall
(Nurideen meaning “enlightened” in Islam) 

Today I visited the grave of my son George.  He was shot and killed last year.  I was there with Jerome--the older brother of George (and another son of mine).  One of the sayings on the grave marker is:
"You will Always Live in Our Hearts."

Yes I do want George to live in my heart in a way some may find surprising.  George had very high expectations of me--especially as to the trust he could place in me.  This he had from a very young age.  Some time ago, I knew of an incident regarding a brother of his who was incarcerated.  I did not tell him what I knew of the matter until several weeks later when he happened to phone me.  When I told him, his reaction was immediate and full-throttled. I understate the case to say that he burned with a righteous anger for my thoughtlessness in not notifying him immediately upon my first hearing the news of his brother.  His fierce but short-lived conflagration resulted in his enrolling in an anger management class.

You may find what I prayed at his grave-site today misled, but I prayed to God that when I find flagrantly thoughtless, disrespectful,or hurtful behavior (including lack of action when action is due); I pray that my anger will grow so strong and totally sufficient as to get me off my ass to do something--even if that merely means panoramic firework conflagrations accompanied by spectacular holy ruckus explosions. I fondly hope that the target of my wrath will understand that I not only wish to protect his victim, but that I also have high expectation of him.  And when (not if) my own dull-headed behavior hurts others, I will then heap opprobrium upon myself until my Savior forgives and, on turning a page in his Great Book, says with a consummate straight face: “Well son, there’s always a first time for anything."

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