There were a couple of things that caught my eye on the internet today. One was this photo.
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The other was something I read in an email. You can read the whole article here, but this part stood out for me.
"The reality is we all get afraid. It’s not about being afraid but what you do when you feel that way. When you feel doubt, or fear, or anger, or frustration, know that you can let it go just as surely as you can pull your hand away from a flame. Keep your life focused on the goodness, on the possibilities and on your most treasured dreams. What begins in your mind ends up in your life. Think continually of the way you would like to be, let these thoughts drive your actions, and your reality will reliably catch up to your thinking."
So maybe you are wondering why I put these two together. Well, a long time ago someone set that bike up against that tree and left it there. Over the years the tree grew around the bike and the bike became old and rusted. It virtually became part of the tree.
That bike didn't have much choice as to whether that tree took over its life, but we do. We can decide to pull away from the fear and anger and not become part of it. We can walk away from it.
No, that does not mean we are being disrespectful of the events that happened. It means that we choose to rejoice in our lives and work to change things so that events like the one at Sandy Hook last week don't happen again.
The things we do can be big or small. They can be as simple as sharing a smile with a stranger or kissing a loved one. Or they can be larger like writing about gun control and mental health access on your blog or contacting your representatives in Washington.
If we let events like this take over our lives then we will become like that old rusty bike.
So often we feel like we are alone in all of the chaos, as if we are the only one on a long empty stretch of beach. But we aren't alone, and the wonderful thing about a beach is the water is always coming ashore and bringing new sand. That is what our lives are like. The old things are constantly being washed away and new beginnings are happening all the time.
So, my hope for all of you my sweet friends is that you will never forget the tragedy that befell our country, but that you will choose to remove your hand from the flame and remember all of the wonderful things that life still holds for you.