May I please have your attention?
It's not that I don't care about what's going on in the world, but my hope has never been in whoever is running the country for the moment, because, ultimately, I believe that each of us has to answer to the God of the Universe for his or her actions. The daily news: I'm appalled, but I'm not surprised. I think it's going to get worse so I'm saving my energy.
For my part I will continue doing what I do:
Attempt to listen more than speak.
Avoid swearing while driving. (That's a hard one!)
Keep writing for sanity and clarity but also to provide glimpses of things larger than ourselves.
Keep dancing to inspire others and give glory to my Creator.
Keep doing my humble projects and believe that somewhere along the line they are making a difference.
As a one-on-one tutor, continue to teach others to understand our language and culture.
Focus on unity rather than division.
Always have hope.
I've experienced plenty of losses, rejection, poverty, grief and humiliation in my relatively short existence on earth. I've been bullied and made to feel inferior by many. Maybe not in the extreme and tangible ways that my fellow human beings from other cultures have experienced them, but my tangled and rugged paths can not be dismissed.
But I think the saddest and hardest thing to forgive is when my beliefs and what I love get misrepresented. Daily. If I say that I love Jesus, I get put into a box and it's assumed that I'm old fashioned, don't touch alcohol, never swear, that I voted a certain way, belong to a designated political party, am expected to do everything right, should have been a nun. (Not dissing any specific lifestyle choices here.)
Believe me, I understand why some say they don't like Christians and what they represent. I don't like it, but I understand.
I don't like being the monkey in the middle, but here I am. I'm grateful for my friends who accept me for what I believe even if they don't follow it. I'm also grateful for my friends who share my faith, prayers and common worship. And all those in between. It would be nice if all of my friends and acquaintances could someday be in the same room together, share stories, laugh, and listen to each other. That's my hope.
That said, the slice I can offer you today is to focus on what you still have and what you hold dear. Hang onto it, be grateful for it, but be willing to let go of it if you need to because, really, nothing belongs to us in the first place. Take nothing for granted - your relationships, your time, resources, the air you breathe, privacy, safety, the health you have that earns your living - because one day, it may no longer be available to you.
But these will always remain - faith, hope, love. Love being the greatest.
Thanks for your time.