At the advent of this blog, I asserted this was to be a “journey” of sorts – an opportunity to rediscover ourselves, and so forth. Well, admittedly, I have been ducking this charge. You see, rather than delving inside myself and following the path I set before us – somewhat presumptive, I suppose, that you will be joining me – I have been addressing (a.k.a. hiding behind) some of today’s issues. Now, while I believe it is likely most reasonable people would excuse me, given how captivated the public and media are by the challenges we face here and abroad, it was never my intention to board the train steaming along the track that is a 24-hour news cycle. Undoubtedly, were I a highly opinionated lad – I am – or, perhaps one who might be inclined to mount his high horse and pontificate debatable issues from time to time – I am – then I might occasionally weigh in on such matters. But, that is most certainly not the direction this blog will take – not so long as I have anything to say about it! Still, one must admit, there’s a lot to talk about. (Just sayin’)
Seriously! I mean… Okay, for example, when was the last time an election provoked such palpable contention? When, at any time since, say, the L.A. riots, have we seen such racial tension in our country? There are so many “movements” spawning other “movements” and “counter-movements.” Depending on who you are engaged in conversation with, what channel you are watching or listening to, black lives, blue lives, or all lives “matter.” Well, this is where it all comes together. This is where I get back on track, where I open up – peel back a layer or two.
Why now? Having so successfully suppressed my inner-most feelings for so long, to what do I attribute this impending eruption of my inner volcano? Well, there are a number of factors. First, I have simply, and finally come to the realization I must step off sooner than later. Second, I have recently befriended some very special people who, despite my having yet to actually meet them in person, have inspired me to “get off my duff.” Their stories are sincere, deeply personal, and revealing, yet too powerful and informative to withhold. I, however, will not be sharing their stories, for their stories are theirs to tell. But you – and they – should know their disclosures have inspired me to follow suit – share the trials I have faced, so others may know they are not alone.
I commence with my story, not once upon a time, somewhere in the distant past, but a mere three or four days ago. My story begins with a new beginning, prompted by recent events and newfound friendships. I have given you two contributing factors which account for my sudden change of course – or should I say, course correction. While it is true the aforementioned factors were key in nudging me out of my comfort zone, I would be remiss in failing to address another, major factor – the impetus, in fact, for Your Life Matters.
Earlier, I referenced the Black Lives Matter movement, among others. While the activists behind these movements may feel justified in their own right, I find it deeply disturbing anyone finds justification in suggesting any one life holds greater value than another. At a time when so many are being persecuted, killed, sleeping under bridges, starving, battling afflictions, mental and/or physical, emerging from broken relationships, agonizing over the loss of loved ones, struggling with addictions, depression, PTSD, etc. – when, the list of those feeling at least some degree of despair is seemingly endless – how anyone can have the audacity to set aside one life, any life, as having more value than the next, is beyond me. I have been troubled by this for some time now, with it only recently coming to a head. Truth be told, that bubble was about to burst, regardless. Consequently, the perfect storm, comprised of these three key elements, developed rapidly and somewhat unexpectedly. My friends, I am relieved, for it is time.
To be clear, my goal, my mission, is (1) to reach you – YOU – whomever and wherever you may be, (2) to prove to you that you matter, just as much as anyone else, and (3) point you to The One to Whom you matter most. Please don’t recoil, fearing I am about to saddle up that high horse of mine and start preaching at you. On the contrary, my wish is for us to venture, together, into our past – wherever the journey leads us, for that matter – in search of who we once were, who we have become and, ultimately, who we wish to be in the months and years ahead. Hence, more than lead you, I wish to accompany you on this journey.
So, “On With It, Then!” Shall we?
[This is an ongoing series, with the preceding text serving as an introduction. The next installment will be Your Life Matters]