Legacy

I’ve spent the past couple of weeks musing (like so many of you) about the state of affairs in our beautiful blue world. It’s been a rough month. Hate. Disaster. Greed. So much destruction and death. Heavy, heavy, ugly, ugly, stuff.

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” – Martin Luther King, Jr.

My thoughts were consumed with my hearts true cry for peace. With my belief that peace can only come from individual declarations of peace, kindness, compassion, and love extended outwards to each and every human life – in our speech, in our actions… and yes… in our posts on Facebook.

“Power is of two kinds. One is obtained by the fear of punishment and the other by acts of love. Power based on love is a thousand times more effective and permanent than the one derived from fear of punishment.” -Mahatma Gandhi

Some might say these are dreams. Naive whimsy from a simple woman who can’t possibly understand the complexities of a frightening world. 

“If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.” -Nelson Mandela

I say no way, and call as witnesses a host of sages through time who changed the world with peaceful ideology.

“But here is what I tell you who are listening. Love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who call down curses on you. And pray for those who treat you badly.” – Jesus Christ

If we truly are better. If we truly are right. If we truly wish for freedom FOR ALL. I believe that it can start at home. It can start in our hearts. Those who have gone before and accomplished unmeasurable gains for goodness, justice, peace, love, and freedom have always done so in the face of fierce opposition and extreme personal sacrifice. I believe that to promote peace with love and unity is the most challenging, the narrowest, and the most personally dangerous path. However, I also believe that it is the only path we are truly called to choose.

“We don’t inherit the earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” – David Brower

Our family was granted a healing miracle this week. A dearly beloved, once sentenced to death, is well again. Her life is one devoted to legacy in many ways and her battle to become well again hinged upon her love, devotion, and trust in truth and goodness. I wish to also live such a life. I hope that one of the hallmarks of my legacy will be peace and love when faced with great adversity. I believe that cultivating that legacy must happen in each decision I make.

Every. Single. Day.

As a mother, as a friend, as a daughter, as a human being… I choose love.

What are you waiting for?

I love Natalie Grant. I love how her music has purpose. I believe there is great power in music with a message.

One of her songs has been rattling through my head lately.

WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR?

That’s the title. It’s catchy, but it’s also unsettling. Especially when you hear the rest:

“So you wanna change the world/What are you waiting for/You say you’re gonna start right now/What are you waiting for/

It only takes one voice… give a little more

The words to this song really get me thinking. What if every person took just one tiny step in their own life towards changing THEIR world? What if you decided that this was the time to do something about that SOMETHING that you keep saying needs changing? What if you started right now?

Here’s what I think. I think we all know what we would change. I think we are given in our hearts passions and convictions as they are necessary in our lives that we can ignore or heed. You know what you want or need to do. The question is,

Is now the time to change your world?

What if it REALLY IS THAT SIMPLE?! What if one small change in you could spark a small change in your family, which might spark something new in your neighbourhood, and get others thinking in your community. What if your community helped to change your province, your nation… and what if your nation could lead the world. Friends, I am just that simple to believe that this equation could work. I believe that we are mothers, fathers, brothers, sisters, children who can make a difference – around this ball filled with humanity – if we would only heed that tiny voice already telling us what to do.

I tell my kids that I believe it to the bottom of my toes and up through my nose! 😉

Let’s be childlike in our belief in change, goodness, and difference-making. One small step… How different might your world look tomorrow, next week, next year, or in five years if you did? Imagine!

Sneak Peak: I did, in fact, take one small step this week to do something that has been in my heart to do for quite some time (but my bravery meter was running a bit low… I’ve fixed that). I’m not ready to share just yet, but rest assured, fine reader, I am taking my own small steps to make the little world I live in a little bit better too.

To those of you difference makers. Thank you for being you! For the rest of you, just taking the plunge like me… Come on in! What are you waiting for?!

Travel Journal: Costa Rica (1)

This post has been 2 years in the making! The fam and I are taking this show on the road!

About two years ago, we began planning, saving, and preparing for a family adventure to beautiful Costa Rica. At that time, we also made a commitment that any travel we would do, would incorporate some form of service and learning.

Enter international volunteer travel company IVHQ. After doing some researching, we chose IVHQ as our vehicle for international volunteering for two reasons:

  1. They were willing to accommodate our family (as opposed to volunteering as an individual or adults-only).
  2. They already had programs in our country of choice for this adventure (Costa Rica), and in an area of interest to our family (agriculture).

We will be travelling to Costa Rica in January, 2016 and will first vacation with friends for one week, and then spend one week volunteering at a coffee farm in Monte Verde, Costa Rica.

IVHQ provides a platform for journal entries on their website for those travelling as part of their program, so I have decided to journal our experiences there. For my first journal entry (our pre-travel preparations), click here, and I’ll keep you posted as I have more to say and we get closer to our departure!

Book Worm: “East of Eden”

My latest read:

This Book Worm beauty had me turning pages. I love novels written in a classic style and with beautiful language and word pictures. This one does that and more.

I couldn’t help but underline passage after passage throughout this book. Somehow, while telling his story, Steinbeck encourages the reader to think about their own. This would be a fantastic book club study, with lots of juicy details to discuss, ponder, and disagree (or agree!) with. I love reading a book that brings out the reading-heckler in me… you know what I mean… turning the pages and wanting to shout out, “Why are you doing that?!… You can’t do that!… Listen to me!!… Come. ON. What is he thinking?!” I love becoming involved with the characters of a great book. I might not be passionate about sports on TV, but give me a good book and I can heckle with the best of them!! 😉

So, this one gets thumbs up all around from me. If you might normally steer clear of novels written in yester-year, don’t pass this one by! Give it a chance. You might find yourself with a whole new genre of books to enjoy!!