The Man In The Mirror

Lately, I’ve been feeling restless.  There seems to be a lot of violence and anger and hate in our city and our country and our world.  I want to change things, make things better, but I don’t know where to begin.  I feel in my spirit that an opportunity is coming and I want to be ready.  I want to be prepared to make good choices in whatever situation I may find myself.

As I was thinking today about what I can do to become a better person, I thought of this song;

This video is full of images of love and hate, peace and violence, helping and harming.  I want so badly to be a force for good in the world.  Sometimes, it seems like I am so small and powerless that anything I can offer the world is insignificant.  At other times, though, I realize that one small person can make a difference.  One voice calling for peace changes the world a little bit.  I want to be a voice of understanding and not a voice of division.

In my life, that means that I must not carry a grudge against anyone.  I have to look at people and what they do in the most favorable light, instead of ascribing evil motives to them.  I want to remember that many people are carrying very heavy burdens of their own.  I don’t want to add one tiny ounce of pain to anyone’s life.

Here is one of my favorite pictures of all time.  It is a picture of Pope John Paul II meeting with the man who shot him.  It is one of the most inspiring pictures I have ever seen.  The Pope met with his attacker and forgave him.  When I am feeling hesitant to forgive anyone, because I think the person does not deserve my forgiveness or because I want to hold onto my hurt and anger for a while, I look at this picture.  I remember that Pope John Paul forgave the man who shot him.  WHO SHOT HIM.  I think that if the Pope could offer forgiveness to the man who tried to kill him, I can reach out to someone who has hurt me in some small way.

I am very, very fortunate to have a job that I can feel really good about.  I work for an agency (ABVI-Goodwill) that is making a big difference in the world.  I work with phenomenal people who are very committed to our mission, which is “To prepare and empower people who are blind and visually impaired to be self-sufficient and contribute to their families and communities.”  Sometimes, when I think that what I do doesn’t make much of a difference in the world, I remember that I am part of a team that is doing good work.  I may have only a small function, but the team needs everyone, even me, to be effective.  I want to perform my role to the very best of my ability – and be kind and friendly to the people I work with – so that I can help us fulfill our mission.

And then there is my blog.  I believe that this blog is my way to stand for something.  I want my words to give people hope.  Because I have learned that my visual impairment does not have to mean the end of my career or the end of my productivity or the end of my joy in life, I have come to believe that I can be a voice telling other people not to give up.  No matter what anyone is going through, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.  I want people to know that they can still find joy in whatever situation they might find themselves.  I want everyone to be able to find beauty around them and grace at work in the world.  Because of this, I want to work on improving my blog and making it a place where people can come to find words of hope and comfort and inspiration.  I want to make each post the best it can be.

All of these are my little ways of working on improving myself and making the world a better place.  Instead of working on pointing fingers and changing others, I need to look at myself honestly and work to get rid of pessimism and any “isms” I discover in myself.  I want to be more kind and loving to everyone I meet.  As the song lyrics say “If you wanna make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make a change.”  It’s time for me to make a change.  Starting with myself.  Starting today.

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