Let us pray.

I went to the cinema today for the opening of Sound of Freedom, a true story about child sex trafficking.

Armed with my popcorn, I settled in to watch the movie. Nothing could have prepared me for what I was about to experience.

Though we all know that the subject of trafficking is disturbing, I believe most of us choose not to think about it. We may hear stories about the border, cartels and high risk, as well as likelihood, of trafficking. We remember convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein’s playground with underage prostitution. Yet it stops there. Not because we are insensitive or cold, but because it doesn’t really touch our lives. It happens to others – other people’s children, other countries or states. It’s a shame, we think, but we are somewhat removed. Or, it’s too ugly for us to to imagine. We don’t want the image in our minds or even fathom the unfathomable.

Did you know that the United States is one of the top destinations for child trafficking and is among the largest consumers of child sex?

Did you know that child sex trafficking is reported in all 50 U.S. states?

Did you know that it is a $150 billion business?

Continue reading “Let us pray.”

Riding the waves of life.

Life is like an ocean.

Sometimes calm and peaceful, but more often than not coming at us like waves crashing up against the sea wall – wild and unpredictable, a magical pool of wonder with a mind and mood of it’s own. If we are not careful, we can get pulled into the current, tirelessly fighting to catch our breath and find some way to swim safely back to shore.

Oh, how we fight the currents, exhausting ourselves by swimming against the tide when we should be surfing the waves – allowing ourselves to ebb and flow, rise and fall. When we get sucked under, finding the will and confidence to paddle to the top, mentally letting go while physically persevering.

Letting go – it’s something most of us aren’t good at, even if we think we are. Call it delusional, or denial. Call it what you will, but we all fight the currents, swim against the tide, and find ourselves drowning in this thing called life.

We want balance. We want happiness. We want consistency. We want – well, maybe we don’t always know what we want. Maybe, we have a mind and mood of our own – just like the ocean.

What is the moral of this post, you may ask?

Keep swimming. Know when to front crawl, know when to float. Know when to dive in, know when to do laps. The key to success is in continuity – in not giving up yet recognizing when to modify or adapt.

The sea speaks to the soul and if you listen carefully, it can speak to you, as well. There will be storms. There will be shipwrecks. There will be sailing on the bright and clear blue water.

Welcome it all. Your heart will go on.

Music moves the heart and stirs the soul. Remembering Karen Carpenter.

I’m a big music gal who couldn’t narrow my tastes down to a favorite genre if you paid me – or simply asked.

I love all music and my collection has no rhyme or reason. From world music to classical, funk, rock, and decade mixes. Blue grass, Cajun, Christian and soul. Easy listening, big band, Gregorian chant. No matter what the genre, you are guaranteed to find it when you scroll through the countless playlists on my apps – or on my Classic iPod (yes, it exists in my car). There are even remnants of my past on CDs at my parents’ house. Continue reading “Music moves the heart and stirs the soul. Remembering Karen Carpenter.”

Your daily thought, point to ponder and soulful reflection.

Daily thought: Some days are just tough. Not a life altering difficult, but a daily hassle, easily irritable, low feeling day.

Point to ponder: No matter how hard we try, some days we’re just down and out. Sometimes we suppress what we’re feeling because we know someone else is going through much worse. We feel guilty for our despondent mood, yet despite our attempts to quell the feelings, they don’t go away.

Soulful reflection: I’ve often found on those dark days, we are sent a reminder or a sign that all is well. A text from an old friend. A positive reminder that we are on the right track. A small victory or forward progress on a project that we’re invested in.

One of my favorite and most moving songs is “Angels Among Us“, a song I’ve posted in the past, complete with lyrics. It is a song that evokes smiles, and brings forth tears. I’ll be sure to post again at the end of this reflection.

Today was one of those days for me. I am flooded with gratitude, appreciative beyond what words could express, yet still found myself struggling just a bit. From my perspective, I’m privileged and spoiled, not in a rotten way – and may I never feel differently. When one  loses sight of that, they grow entitled and selfish.

As I worked this evening while wallowing in my angst, a text from a friend lit up my phone. It was more than a text – it was filled with friendship, wonderful memories, and genuine love and comfort. The irony was, my friend had no way of knowing how much I needed that tonight. How much that text shifted today’s mood and perspective.

Friend, if you’re reading this post – thank you for brightening my day, and recharging the ‘happy’ in my heart.

On some days, the signs aren’t so obvious. But I guarantee if you pay attention, you’ll find them.

As I close this post, I leave you with the lyrics from a song that holds a special place in my heart. May you share my fondness, and share a smile as you shed that tear.

Angels Among Us 

I was walkin’ home from school on a cold winter day
Took a shortcut through the woods, and I lost my way
It was gettin’ late, and I was scared and alone
But then a kind old man took my hand and led me home
Mama couldn’t see him, but he was standin’ there
And I knew in my heart, he was the answer to my prayers
Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live, to teach us how to give
To guide us with the light of love
When life held troubled times, and had me down on my knees
There’s always been someone there to come along and comfort me
A kind word from a stranger, to lend a helpin’ hand
A phone call from a friend, just to say I understand
And ain’t it kind of funny that at the dark end of the road
Someone lights the way with just a single ray of hope
Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live, to teach us how to give
To guide us with the light of love
They wear so many faces; show up in the strangest places
To grace us with their mercy, in our time of need
Oh I believe there are angels among us
Sent down to us from somewhere up above
They come to you and me in our darkest hours
To show us how to live, to teach us how to give
To guide us with the light of love
To guide us with the light of love