2013 started in the worst possible way for Arkansas Business Publishing Group. Our beloved executive assistant, Christine Harris, was injured in a horrific New Year’s Day car accident that killed her sweet husband, Rev. David Harris, and their 10-year-old granddaughter, Maci. The same driver who rammed their car at a high speed was, according to the State Police, fleeing the scene of another accident that killed a 2-month-old boy. Two other children and at least four more adults were injured in this senseless, unthinkable chain of events.
From the very start, nothing about 2013 will match our plans. Not for the Harris family or for the other families destroyed in a few wild moments. Not for Oak Park Baptist Church, which is without its pastor for the first time in more than 35 years. Not for our company, which has been reminded that even colleagues that we think of as irreplaceable may be suddenly unable to handle all those details that the rest of us never have to worry about.
We have every reason to expect justice to be done for the criminal acts that snuffed out three innocent lives and caused so much collateral damage. But that is only an external part of the path forward.
The Serenity Prayer comes to mind at times like these, especially the part about accepting the things we cannot change — a tall order even for people of faith like the family of David and Maci Harris. But perhaps the more important part for the rest of us is the part about changing the things we can — particularly our habits and our priorities. The future we’re planning for, personally and professionally, may or may not be ours to enjoy. Striking a balance between the here-and-now and the yet-to-come is hard work.
As we start 2013, let us have the courage to be agents of positive change in our homes, in our workplaces and in our communities. Let us have the courage to plan and the serenity to accept that plans change in the blink of an eye.