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Soft Place to Land
Photo: Studiomill
When does a nine-story fall not kill you? When you make a perfect landing.

What should have been a tragedy for Gloria Jummati turned out quite different. While cleaning the balcony of her 9th-floor condominium, the 70-year-old woman toppled over the railing. Gloria had little time to think as she hurtled toward the ground. The 100-foot fall lasted less than three seconds.

But Gloria never actually hit the ground. A small, forest-green, door canopy broke her fall. Gloria landed in an ideal spot, right in the middle of the canvas and aluminum pipe construction. A couple of inches in any direction, and the accident could have proven fatal. Instead, "her landing was perfect.The pipes bent and cradled her body, stopping her just feet from the ground."

Only Shoulder Injury

The senior citizen walked away with only a shoulder injury. Not even the canvas canopy was torn.*

I was amazed when I first read this story that happened in 2005. It reminded me of a conversation that my sister Dawn and I had a number of years ago about relationships, mistakes, and people's desire for redemption. Dawn is a massage therapist, and although she is near retirement, she has had the opportunity to reach out to people through the power of human touch in ways that very few people can connect. She made a wonderfully deep comment about people's need for relational understanding.

Listen to her words: "Mike, I've come to realize in life, that it doesn't matter where people have been, the activities that they may have been involved with, or the mistakes that they've made; almost everyone needs a soft place to land."

The Bible says:  "So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other" (John 13:34).

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By Michael Temple. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW LIVING TRANSLATION 

‚Äč* Beukema, John. "Woman Survives 9th-floor Fall at Her Fort Lauderdale Condo," South Florida Sun Sentinel (5-12-05).

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