There are times in life when everything we perceive as “normal” about it screeches to a halt. We’re at work or at the park with our 2-year-old, lazily pushing him on the swing when the call comes in—a loved one has suffered a calamity. We hustle home, throw a few things in a bag and either start making flight arrangements or hop in the car, “dropping everything.”
Time and every other obligation and interest as we know it fades, and we enter an altered inner landscape where only one thing seems to matter.
Or does it?
On September 1, 1939, German troops crossed the Polish border en masse, setting off a chain reaction that jump-started World War II within 48 hours as France and Great Britain declared war on the German invaders. This was calamity writ large, a shot across the bow of an entire nation’s, continent’s, and ultimately the free world’s, consciousness.
Lewis warns us off notions that would make any...