Hurricane Harvey and Irma have been bad news to all in their paths. Lives have sadly been lost, houses demolished and personal items blown or washed away. Such horrific acts of nature remind us that we are all fragile and vulnerable. The right wind and rain can wash everything away including us and people we love so much.
We love our stuff. We store it. We hoard it. We want to pass it on to our children and grandchildren. There are storage facilities being built almost everywhere in America because we love our stuff so much. Harvey and Irma remind us again that our greatest assets are our lives and the people we love. If we have our health, safety and valued people in our lives then everything is either secondary or worthless in perspective to life and people.
None of us want to see our houses floating down a river or covered up in trees to never be lived in again. We don't want to lose our pictures and everything we have worked so hard to buy and cherish. Such loss is excruciating. However, it is stuff and stuff is never forever.
I recognize there is much about this planet that seems to last forever. There is a huge rock formation above my old home place that we always called Buzzard Rock. It was a fun place to climb and play as a kid. I can't see or tell where that rock has changed one bit over the last 60 years. It looks the same to me. I suspect a hundred years from now it will look much the same and another generation of people will have walked or played on that rock and passed on while Buzzard Rock remains for many others to come by for fun and play.
September 11 is once again here. Those of us who lived on that day will never forget the crumbling of the twin towers. A new incredible building called the One World Trade Center has been built and is phenomenal. The tragedy of that day was so many innocent lives were snuffed out by such evil people. Those hardworking good American people are no longer with us and nothing can replace them. We remember them and their value to us all.
People are suffering in America today, from the people of Texas to all over Florida, Georgia and to all who remember Sept. 11, 2001. However, it doesn't have to be a hurricane or act or terrorism to shake our very lives. Often it's the everyday occurrences of life that sometimes go unnoticed by the masses of people round us. Often, it's the death of an aging parent or the sudden loss of a young adult that shakes our lives. A person overdosing and dying from drugs breaks our hearts. Or there is the man or woman we read or hear about who can no longer cope with the difficulties of life.
Take time today on this day to value who and what really counts. Cherish those around you and help those you can. We can replace the stuff. It's the people that we can't.
Glenn Mollette is a syndicated columnist and author of 12 books. He is read in all 50 states.