The times we live in are “precarious”. I looked up that word to see if it meant what I thought. It does. It means uncertain, unstable, perilous, governed by things outside of our control. This past week I feel like the times have been playing hockey with my emotions. So…many awful and wonderful things going on in the world. Like two teams fighting for my heart as if only happy or sad could have the puck and when one succeeds in making a point it scores – and the emotions go wild. Not a fun game. I’d rather play real hockey. It is much safer. All the stuff fighting for our emotional attention can be quite taxing. Especially for people who are of an emotional or empathetic nature. Which is me. Some people have labeled them HSP’s but I refuse the label. I refuse to be confined by what someone has noticed and then qualified by their explanation. I can learn from it but I refuse to let it define me. I find I am like that a lot. If you tell me I have no choice I will set out to prove you wrong. That can be both good and bad.
I would like to introduce you to players in the game. You may recognize them. Many have been in the news or on Facebook and what not. I’m pretty sure you will know which team they are on. Perhaps they have been playing hockey with your emotions or maybe your team has different players.
The Orlando shooting at Pulse. Awful. Awful. Awful. No one deserves that. I don’t care what you believe. It is just awful. I found it overloaded my emotions and I had a difficult time speaking to it due to the magnitude of its awfulness. But there were those who did wonderful compassionate things. One man made crosses for the victims. See HERE A group of people dressed as angels showed up at a memorial of a victim barring the awfulness of another group that dared to picket (Westboro makes me want to throw up). See HERE.
A two year old is snatched away from his daddy by an alligator right in front of him while on vacation to Disney World. Vacation at Disney! How many ways is that awful? There were those who had the audacity to blame the dad. Really? That audacity overloaded my emotions so I could not speak. But a mom did. A mom who had been at that exact same location with her toddler only one hour before stating something to the effect of it could have happened to her. See HERE. What compassion.
A child falls into a gorilla pen at a zoo and they have to shoot the gorilla to save the kid. People post and write about how awful the mom is or how awful the zoo is. Really? It became so apparent how easy it was for people to judge others from their computer. Again I didn’t know what to say. But someone did. They wrote an open letter to the arrogant perfect parents. See HERE. Thank you Jesus!
More than one parent has made a video shaving their kids head to openly shame them for something they did wrong. One was for bullying a cancer patient. It boggled my mind how that parent didn’t see that as bullying their child. Having been on the receiving end of public shaming I found this so appalling I could not speak. But someone did. They wrote confronting the shaming and blaming. See HERE. I was so glad. I shared it. It was the only thing I felt the power to do.
A college student rapes a woman and leaves her behind a dumpster. It takes over a year for the trial. He gets only six months. Awful. Just writing this makes me want to hurl. How is one supposed to respond to such awfulness? Many did. Hurling insults, railing accusations and pointing fingers. But someone else wrote something highly constructive. Amanda Howell wrote a post that got shared over and over and over and finally I had the pleasure of reading it. She spoke to it with finesse. She acknowledged the heinousness of not taking responsibility (as apparently Brock blamed everyone else for his behavior). She said how she cannot change those things (among other awful things she addresses) but states what she could do. Read it HERE.
Those are stories in the news. We also have stories that are closer to home, in our own lives…
My eight year old grandson just finished second grade. His classmate’s mom died of cancer. Awful. Again I fell into my emotions too strong to be constructive. But my daughter responded with love. She took her eight year old son to the funeral of a mom of an eight year old. What compassion. What a lesson for her son.
My son and daughter in law had a miscarriage last year. Awful. They are now expecting their rainbow baby. Just last night was the gender reveal party surrounded with love and joy. I had the privilege of being present both at the awful and the joyous.
My mother in law has Alzheimer’s. Awful insidious disease. Beyond words to describe. Until one day I was given them – A Bird Named Payn.
Can you identify the teams? Which team will you play on?
I have seen people sit on the bench with apathy. I cheer those who have scored with love and compassion. I have sat on the bench being overwhelmed by my emotion. I am addressing that because I want to play on the winning team of love and compassion more often and with greater skill.
I want to be like the moon in people’s darkness because I believe that scores a win.
…by love serve one another. For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this;
Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Galatians 5:13b-14 KJV
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