2020 Vision: Reality Check

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When I was a little kid, I always envisioned the year 2020 more like how it would be like in the movie Back to the Future Part II with psychedelic hats, hover boards, and other cool technology! But my year 2020 is looking more like something out of the Twilight Zone with fears, complexities, violence, and tons of suspense.

More than anything, this year’s current events have really challenged me to do more, be more, take a stand, be proactive, and get engaged. I’m sure I’m not the only one. In fact, if you’re reading this, chances are that you’re agreeing with those sentiments as well.  Here’s how I see it. If my purpose is to make an impact in this world, then I want to make a memorable impact.

I don’t want to say empty words or perform empty acts. I want to do things that send good vibes to people and stand out among the rest. I believe in moving forward. The truth is, there will always be another cause to take up for, another struggle, another commitment, another argument, another battle, another protest, or another war going on. It’s simply the world we live in. And I am convinced that our trajectory is headed towards further divisions instead of unity.

My goal is not to capitalize on these divisions, as some are so dutifully making it a point to do. Rather, my goal is to make a positive impact. That goal will not change no matter what our world’s next challenge may become because at the end of the day people will adapt and adjust in order to cope with the present circumstances.

What I see is hurting people on all sides. It doesn’t matter the issue unfortunately. There are some who carry real hurt and real pain into their present perspective on things because of past experiences that have scarred them, and instead of being able to move forward, they are not able to because they are still processing those hurts… still carrying all those hurts.

This is why I do what I do. Because someone helped me heal emotionally, I am able to now gift that to others. This is my life mission. And in order to help others heal, I have to be willing to see the hurt that resides on all sides. It’s not the popular position, or the promoted position, or even the understood position. But I am ok with that, and it’s the position that I have chosen to stand on.

In fact, taking this approach reminds me of my mother and how she would tell me stories about her cousin Cephas who was a pastor. When he was drafted to fight in World War I, he asked his commanding officers if he could preach the gospel to the men who were fighting on either side of the war. My mom recounted that her cousin would go from fox hole to fox hole preaching the gospel to men fighting on both sides because he recognized that although both sides were fighting for what they believed in, both sides had men in need of real soul salvation.

I had an epiphany the other day of what I really need to be doing at this time. To me, what matters most is checking in with my friends and family and meeting them at the point of their needs regardless of where they are on the issues overtaking our world right now. I feel sad that people are more interested in taking up picket signs and shouting at each other, than getting to know the other person they are dismissing as a human being. I don’t say this to mock the times we are living in, but just like Erin Gruwell was able to bring divided classmates (including opposing student gang members) together with The Line Game activity in the movie Freedom Writers, I know that there can be true change and unity can be achieved if there are those willing to go from fox hole to fox hole.

So I decided to act on my epiphany earlier this week by reaching out to others and asking them how they are doing. I am amazed and overjoyed at the connections I have been able to make with those who are struggling with real fears and anxieties over what our world will be experiencing next. I have been able to offer laughter through words, hope where there have been tears, and strength during uncertainty to all sides.

I haven’t reached out to all the friends on my list yet, but when it’s my turn to reach out to you, please know that I care about you. Understand that I believe you deserve kind words, good vibes and a bright future. Please believe that I care about your soul. Know that I want you to have good experiences in this life. I hope you’ll be in a more positive place after we speak, and I hope you won’t mind hearing from me again later to check on you.

The struggle is real, but so is the healing.

So, let’s focus on healing.

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