Choosing Love

Choosing love is not choosing to be blind to injustices done unto others;
Choosing love is not choosing to be silenced by your critics;
Choosing love is not choosing to cower to a bully’s rant to “get over it”;
Choosing love is not choosing to follow others down a path to destruction;
Choosing love is not choosing to be weak when strength is needed in opposition;
Choosing love is not choosing to look the other way when an unpopular cause calls your name.

It is because I choose love that I march hand in hand with those who are different than me;
It is because I choose love that I shout out in support of those who cannot shout out for themselves;
It is because I choose love that I shine a light into the darkness of the oppressor;
It is because I choose love that I bare my back to the lashes of the masters in place of the slave;
It is because I choose love that I risk losing certain friends for the betterment of less fortunate strangers;
It is because I choose love that I defiantly stand up to those who attempt to tell me who and how to love;

Love is not the same as passivity.
Love is not weakness and it is not always pretty.
Love is not easy and it does not always return the rewards that you may want.
But, in the end, it is my belief that love will conquer all.

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When Do You Shout?

When do you shout?
When do you yell, scream and carry on about?

When do you stop being politely quiet,
When do you no longer keep your thoughts to yourself,
When do you pierce the veil of silence,
Let your voice be heard and roar the roar of the majestic lion?

When your family is in danger?
When someone is about to be hurt?
When a horrible injustice is about to occur?
When you fear the world you know is about to end?

When do you shout?
Is the question that now I shout?

The News

Every time I turn on the news,
I am saddened by stories of hate;
I am discouraged by death and destruction;
I am disheartened by signs of greed and struggles for power;
I am appalled by the lies and misrepresentations;
I am troubled by the troubles man causes other men.

The answer, however, is not to turn off the news;
The answer is not to look away.

No, the answer is to make our own news,
Make news of peace and news of love;
Make news of life and creation;
Make news of charity and of assistance;
Makes news of truths and acceptance;
Makes news of man unburdening the burdens of other men.

You do not right the wrongs in this world simply by refusing to witness the bad;
You right the wrongs by overpowering them with goodness.

The absence of doing bad is not enough.

We must make the good news impossible to ignore;
We must become the news by helping each other in newsworthy ways;

We must be creative with our love;
Magnanimous with our charity;
Spectacular with our assistance;
And unforgettable in our tolerance.

We must stand up and be recognized as the news people should hear.

The Outrage Dies Too Fast

One way you can tell that we have grown too accustomed to the senseless mass murder of innocent people in our country;
One way you can recognize that nothing will be done to prevent these tragedies from being repeated over and over again throughout our land;
One way you know that the record number of souls slaughtered in the Orlando nightclub will soon be surpassed, is that …
… the outrage dies too fast.

Regardless of whether you believe the cause to be from our inability to enforce stricter gun control laws;
Regardless of whether you think the key contributor is the inadequacies in our mental health care environment;
Regardless of whether you are of the opinion that this is the result of an infiltration of foreigners and terrorists;
Nothing does or ever will change,
our future is destined to repeat our past, because …
… the outrage dies too fast.

Headlines last a day or two;
Tears are shed for a week;
Protests are held, but not long do they last …
… the outrage dies too fast.

The Ability in You

Yes, I am but a pebble,
Yet, ripples I can create;
Even a single grain of sand
On an endless beach
In the right oyster,
A pearl can make.

The entirety of this infinite universe
Larger than the wildest imagination can possibly comprehend,
Was ignited by a single atom
Too small to be seen by the eye of man.

If you believe that you are but a pebble;
If you allow yourself to just become one grain of sand on a crowded beach;
If you don’t believe your atom can ignite a Big Bang;
Then, making a difference is out of reach.

Do not put limits on your possibilities,
Although that is what others may try to do;
Create ripples,
Become a pearl,
Change the world,
I know you have the ability in you.

What I Am

It is not the diamond on her finger that makes us a couple;
It is in the willingness to suffer each other’s imperfections silently and with a smile;
It is in putting the other’s desires and wants ahead of our own;
It is in relishing the time spent together in crisis above time spent apart in splendor.

It is not the children we have produced that makes us a family;
It is in the tears and the laughter we have shared through life’s trials and tribulations;
It is in the unbridled pride that swells in our hearts for the attempt despite the ending result;
It is in the sacrifices we gladly suffer for the gain of the collective group.

It is not my happiness that makes me smile; it is hers and theirs;
It is not for my gain that I work; it is for hers and for theirs;
It is not my journey that I plan;
It is not my load that I carry;
It is not my injury that I fear;
It is not my fortune that I seek;
I do not live each day for me; I live it for her; I live it for them.

For, when I placed that diamond on her finger, I stopped being just me;
When we came out of the maternity room, we stopped being just us;

What I am is a husband and a father; a partner and a parent.
What I am is a man.