By Rosie Preston
As I wrote this article earlier this week, I was reminded of the years of styles, politicians, weather changes, babies being born, people passing away, the Vietnam War (many guys I knew never came home), becoming paranoid about car accidents, being in fear of something happening to one of my loved ones, having to realize I may never get to do some of the things I’d like to (like travel), making good choices instead of wrong ones, learning not to become emotionally engaged in everything going on around me and appreciating the people in my life who can love me for who I am. Perhaps there are more examples, but I’m not taking the time to write a book.
I learned years ago in a counseling session about co-dependent people that I’ve always loved too much. I now know that it’s not heal-thy, and I’m focusing on living several more years, if possible.
It’s not a good thing to trust everything you hear in the news and from other people. If you are lucky to have one or two good friends, keep them! A good friend listens, allows you to vent or cry and is there for you during the good times and bad times.
The other day, my 16-year-old granddaughter and I had a conversation about prayer. She knows I pray all the time, and she came into my room after I had gone to bed. She often does this, and we have long and wonderful conversations. On this particular night, granddaughter wanted to discuss the fact that I believe in praying for guardian angels. She told me that a person who is high in his faith had told her that it could not be true, because then everyone would be safe.
The answer is that I have had many questions myself. I told granddaughter that I realized something bad can happen to good people, but I’ve also seen many blessings. Because of that, I will continue in my prayers.
I found some great news in a book I read a while ago – When Bad Things Happen to Good People. A best seller for years, the book brought up the fact that death will happen, and bad things will happen. God cannot stop the people who choose to drive drunk or carry a weapon intending on killing others or prevent the loss of a person we love to a disease. That opened my eyes. The best thing about the book was that I wondered how it was going to end after the author shared his wisdom. This was his answer: “When life does not turn out as we planned and we experience awful, horrible and sad situations, God gives us the strength, wisdom and willpower to get through it.”
That helped me numerous times. In this age of being a senior citizen, having two wonderful children and eight grandchildren and great-grandchildren, I feel blessed every day and give thanks every morning to wake up to living in a peaceful place.
It can be very upsetting to watch the news. There are fires in California, floods in the Midwest, tornados in the South and hurricanes in Florida and on the east coast. There is always a statistic about crime rates being higher. I believe if we look back over our past years, we will realize that this present evil is not going away.
I subscribed to Readers Digest magazine years ago. I jokingly would tell friends that it was like getting a college education because it covered so many subjects of interest. One story was about a poll that covered so many people who were sick and did not receive prayers. The people who were sick who had many people praying recovered quicker. That was amazing!
We cannot change other people, because we do not have the power to do so. You may think you can be kind and loving to people you love and see the mistakes they make, but you cannot change them. However, you can love and pray for those people from a distance. At least prayer can help us to be strong enough to love them through whatever is happening.
The way we can judge others is unfortunate. I’ve heard it all my life with folks talking about how people look, how they dress, what part of town they live in, what kind of car they drive and how their appearance is, not to mention the bad things you may know about them. This happens very often, and I’ve been guilty of it, as well.
The Bible teaches that we are not to judge. The most important verses I can remember are “Love the Lord your God with all your heart” and “Love your neighbor as you love yourself.” I must ask this question: “Who is your neighbor?”
Let’s put it in our hearts and minds and try our best to answer these many questions with an open mind.
Keep smiling, Rosie
Rosie Preston may be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.