Praying

I am not unlike all of you- over the course of the last month or so, I have been subjected via social and other types of media, to some of the harshest, meanest, most hateful news, opinions and messages about Law Enforcement, as well as our country. I have needed much time to process my thoughts. I have cried, spoken to God, watched clips of events that just rock me to the core of my being. I entitled this “Praying”, because honestly, this is what I do, aloud or silently, throughout each day.

This is not an essay on judgement– I am not an Officer, a Judge, or the Lord. I will not be the one who has the final say. I do not believe that expressing my political opinions fit well with the mission and message of positivity that I seek to offer through my page. In all honesty, my heart has been broken for our country for a long while now– in order for there to exist so much discord, hurt, and separation, it has taken more than just the last few months.

I am happy to know that I am a pretty good judge of character– and I have met many characters, good and bad, throughout my life. The advice to never judge a book by its cover is such a fundamentally great mantra to carry with one’s self. I have walked a mile in many different pairs of shoes. Known poverty, and also had enough. Enough about me though, what I want to say is this:(and it is really so basic)– To come back together as a Country, the “melting pot” that we are of cultures, religions, and nationalities unlike any other in the word, we must seek to see the good in others. Don’t judge one race because of the actions of one person, or three or twenty. Please don’t judge all Officers of the Law because of the action(s) or mistakes — admitted or not, remember WE are not the final judge of anyone! We have a justice system in this country that was devised 240 years ago, although amended  through the decades, by wise and dedicated men who believed with all their hearts– enough to die– that we would be the greatest Country in the World. We ARE. I truly believe too many people do not have the ability or have not been taught the empathy to try to understand where someone comes from, what they have seen and experienced, and how this has crafted them into who they are. Empathy is taught- no one is born knowing how to relate to others, our parents are given the job along with so many others- to teach us morality, reverence, and hopefully, a peaceful attitude towards others.

Of course I know that this is not the case with everyone. I will be a Social Worker in just a few more semesters. Believe you me, I have listened to some personal stories that made me question whether I truly had the heart for my chosen field. Stories during which tears unexpectedly sprung into my eyes– and words failed me.

The idea of embracing who we are as a country, as a WHOLE people reminds me of words from our Pastor, Kenny Mulligan. He and I agree on many things– he is one of the most outstanding people I have ever met. One is this: Our country needs God. We need Jesus. Truly, we believe that the church is the hope of the world. It is not a “bible thumping”, drag you to church on Sunday, memorize your scriptures-type of message. It is basic, easy to understand, but can be so difficult to practice. Jesus teaches us LOVE– Love so abundant that he was willing to die so that we would not suffer the fires of Hell. Jesus teaches us FORGIVENESS. ( I know– that is a big one!) It is the Christian way to forgive. Let it go, release yourself from the agony of a grudge or a feeling of guilt, and release those around you as well. We are all human beings, we are all so very different, yet; we are all given diverse, wonderful, and unique gifts that we are to share with the world. We need to come together as a Nation, as a people, as human beings. Judge not, for you shall be judged.

The wisest people, those who actually “have” the most, ( and I do not mean possessions) can sit down and talk with anyone of any walk of life, and feel comfortable and at ease. THIS is the nation that I dream of for my children and their children. Please pray for those who have lost love ones because of wrongly displaced hatred, and reach out to your neighbor, someone in need, a lost soul and begin to help to sew back together the fabric of our nation. This is my prayer today– and every day. God Bless us all and the Officers who walk the beat everyday to protect our lives and livelihoods.

~Amy 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Mantra

I believe I have mentioned the word Perspective in at least one blog posting since August…If not, I know surely that it has come up in conversation with friends and family at least 100 times. I am choosing that as a sort of mantra or mission statement, if you will, for the year 2016, because with it, the world is seen through a new lens, more organically, less scripted and endowed with a much greater joy and zest after all, in the words of a favorite Carrie Underwood song: “This is just my temporary home…” We are not beings made for this Earth. No matter what you may or may not believe- time and time again the notion keeps returning to one centralized concept- There is so much more than just this time here to look forward to.

I have had such a wonderful 2016 so far, and if I were superstitious like my Irish ancestors are surely known for being- I would be “knocking wood,” however the last year of my life has taught me that I should run swiftly into tomorrow- no clothing set out, no concrete plans (except perhaps an appointment or a meeting or class), but instead, an ever unquenchable anticipation of whatever it may be that lay around the next corner. Life is so short, and at times so fleeting. I have been crudely reminded of that in the last month, and I know that those who are watching me from above – cherished souls lost to our Earthly world, are rejoicing! Awake! I approach a “milestone” birthday next month with no apprehension, no self-critical glaces, NO regrets! I am so thankful, envisioned, and blessed for every contact I have made – this year and throughout my life. My Facebook page may likely have the most diverse 500+ people on anyone’s page, and each one of them means something to me, is special to my life, and has had a hand in shaping who I have become- as well as helping me stand firm in the knowledge of where I am determined to go.

Education- and the dedication to ONE subject, ONE profession, and a lifetime of repetition has been a foothold that had eluded me for a long time. I obtained my Associate’s Degree in 2014 after attending school full-time and working part-time, keeping my marriage and my family center stage and raising our two fabulous sons. It was a feat that seemed so daunting on Day One, but as I held my Diploma in my hand, through the tears of joy I felt a pang….What next? I had wanted this 8×11 piece of cardstock paper with  the word DIPLOMA on it for so long, that I had failed to look past graduation. I spend the summer bettering myself, laughing with friends, camping, and losing in excess of 50 lbs. I was altered, that was not in question, however where was I going next? I know a lot of students and graduates feel this way. I entered my first college experience- straight out of High School with a thirst for knowledge, which has never abated :), but also with a major in English- which was putting me on the fast track for either a LOONNGGG College experience or the poorhouse ( as my Grandma Smith would have said.) I now look back at what has been tried, failed at, learned, and dreamed since those days and I wish, not to change  what happened to me throughtout my life thus far, but to have had the Perspective that I now cherish. I truly believe the power of the words on the sign that hangs above our bed: “If you can dream it, you can do it!”

Happy 2016 My friends! I wish you all nothing but the best! Keep dreaming BIG!

Amy 🙂