It seems as though the last couple of months have been riddled with devastation. From the hurricanes that flooded cities and blew away homes to the mass shooting in Las Vegas, the darkness has fallen on many, many people. My heart is heavy for the people of Las Vegas, as it is for the people of Puerto Rico, Houston, Cuba, Mexico, Barbuda, the Florida Keys, the Virgin Islands, and for all those affected by these events. It seems as though the forces in charge have amassed a great deal of hardship and spread it out over what is hopefully, only this two month span. I know that we are all hoping that the calamity calms and again, the news we see, read, and hear, can be compiled of something as silly as the Kardashians.
Realistically speaking, it won’t. We will continue to hear, see, and read of devastation throughout the rest of our years, just as we have in the years that have passed. We will see brutality by both nature and people. Our hearts will continue to be heavy for all those afflicted and we will pray we are always too far removed from it that we are not directly affected.
While our hearts will be heavy, my heart will always be full.
So many people now are questioning the future that we face, they fear the future their children will face. To be honest, sometimes I’m terrified also. But then I remember all the good that I’ve seen in this world.
Throughout my short life, I have not been shielded from devastation. In the past several years, I’ve seen it in mass whether on the news or closer to home and with the people that I have served both on a personal or professional level. While I’ve seen all of the devastation, I have also seen an even greater and overwhelming amount of good. In the few times that I haven’t, I’ve worked hard to be the good that I couldn’t see.
I’ve seen it in the disaster relief efforts, with the bus loads of people and semis and planes full of supplies. I’ve seen neighbors checking in on neighbors, helping move branches and rebuild fences. I’ve seen it in the floods of messages I received before and after Hurricane Irma from friends and family willing and wanting to help and sending well wishes. I’ve seen it in the unbelievably long lines of people waiting to donate blood and all throughout the good thoughts, prayers, and fundraisers promoted and shared by countless people.
There is SO much good in this world. There is so much hope in this world.
Our world suffered but has survived world wars, devastating disease, plagues, starvation, slavery, holocausts, and terrorism. It will continue to survive because of the good that chooses to be a prevalent and persistent force for change. Not only has it survived, it has become better. Evil exists, it may be louder and more reported on than ever before, but it has always existed and it is not stronger. It is losing.
The best thing we can teach our children is not to fear but to act stronger than their fear. To look for the good and to be the good they can’t see. So much so that their good becomes so loud and so noticeable that the world begins to change. If not the whole world, at least the world that surrounds them. We need to teach them, and show them by our actions, that one voice can propel change. And then we need to be that voice that changes the world. We need to speak, act, and cause change. We need to point out the positive and then be the positive where it’s lacking.
We can never judge a lifetime by a screenshot, but we can move forward to create a better picture.
Have you ever read The Minpins? Billy’s mom tells him never to go into the forest because of the “Whangdoodle, Hornswogglers, Snozzwanglers and Vernicious knids” that live there. Billy doesn’t listen and of course, gets chased by the evil Gruncher, all the way up a tree. Safely out of its reach, Billy looks around and sees tiny windows and doors. The homes of the Minpins, who have been tormented by the Gruncher. Billy devises a plan and defeats the Gruncher, relieving the Minpins of their monster. From this simple story comes the best advice that I think Roald Dahl was ever inspired to give.
And above all watch with glittering eyes, the whole world around you, because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic, will never find it.”
Yes, this world has Whangdoodles Hornswogglers, Snozzwanglers, and Grunchers. Even still. We need to go out into the forest and watch for the glitter of good. We need to teach our children to look for the good, to fight the bad, and to be the good they can’t seem to find. And to remember the Minpins that are all joining forces to defeat the Gruncher, and Billy, who was able to do it all because he decided he could.