What Do You Choose?

There have been some extremely rough headlines looping the news over the past few weeks.  I’m certainly not implying that the standard news is a bucket of rainbows and unicorns, but certain stories are under heavy discussion on social media at the moment. I’ve been upset by what I’ve been seeing as well, but I’m not going to detail any specifics of that here.  As a bonus, I’ll delete any comments that appear to be sporting the magical scent of Eau de Pandora’s Box.

However what I will say is this – there is boundless good in the country and in the world.

One month ago, countless residents in my city found themselves several feet under water.  The rain continued to inundate southeastern Texas and the days to come would reveal tremendous losses for so many.

Before the rains ceased, people of all backgrounds were already wading through treacherous waters to help their neighbors. Others were en route to join the rescue efforts.  When the skies cleared, the rest of the community raced to assist anyone in need.

Taking care of our fellow Texans was all that mattered.  There was no distinction of class or color or faith or politics.  People housed family members, friends, and strangers.  The number of volunteers and physical donations were so extensive that shelters had to turn them away repeatedly.  The neighboring states came out in force as well, and support poured in from every corner of the globe.

The hurricane created areas of devastation that brought many of us to our knees from grief.  However the response of love in return was stunningly beautiful.  I sincerely believe that this incredible experience of broad human benevolence was the divine gift of the storm.  A gift such as that is rare and precious and should never ever be forgotten.

The darkest hours often serve as the times when the brightest light can be found.  We stand by each other when the most difficult moments of our lives confront our communities.  The differences vanish, and we see the Truth that we are souls united together in this human experience.

We are going to have our differences – huge differences.  There will be times when we will fiercely disagree with other people’s actions or words.  We will expect all to understand why we are right, and we will try to convince the opposing parties to concur absolutely with our “correct” views.  But as we grow angrier and louder, the lines of division get deeper and more pronounced.

Speaking personally, if you want to try to open my heart to anything at all, approaching me with ferocity and rage is the fastest way to shatter any chance of that happening.  Again I’m not saying that I don’t have strong emotions regarding what is happening.  I just know that I have walked a different path than every other person out there.  We each see the world through our own filters that are based on our personal experiences.

Of course I believe that I’m right (because I am!).  But then again, maybe I’m just right for what I personally know at this moment.  My responses to situations years ago seemed correct at the time, but they would not necessarily be the same as the responses I would have today.  Taking it a step further, I am genuinely saddened at some of the choices I made in the past, and if I was in the same situations today, I wouldn’t repeat those mistakes.  But I didn’t see it that way then.

We don’t have to agree, and if we did, I would be letting you know what’s correct (because as my husband can confirm, I have all the answers).  It shouldn’t take a mass tragedy to reveal the best parts of ourselves and of those around us.

So for this moment right now, I want to soften my own heart.  I’m going to turn my attention to the immeasurable good that I have experienced since the hurricane while I also remember the innumerable times I felt it before the storm.  I need to turn off the noise of the media and tune out the focus on a degradation of our communities.  There are endless numbers of beautiful true stories to be found.  If we choose to fixate on anything else, that’s on us.

Recognize that you will make different choices because your perspective is not the same as anyone else’s.  This is part of the grand design.  If you don’t like a choice someone else makes, make a different one.  If you are hurt by a person’s actions, don’t replicate the behavior.  If you really want to be heard by another, try truly listening to them first.  Your anger will never soften another person’s heart nor will it heal your own hurts.  But your sincere love and compassion just might.

Love and light always – Joanna

14 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jodi Stibora
    Sep 28, 2017 @ 21:11:48

    You’re a wonderful writer, I am proud to say I know you.


    • MoJo
      Sep 28, 2017 @ 21:22:15

      I need to bottle you up and take a dose of Jodi every time I’m bummed out. You always say the kindest thing. Thank you so much Jodi. You’re absolutely wonderful. ❤️


  2. Playamart - Zeebra Designs
    Sep 28, 2017 @ 21:12:02

    Whew! WordPress is my only ‘social media’ that i spend time on, and I see about an hour’s worth of television in a month. When I drove out this past week and connected to the internet, there were several stories online that baffled and confused me a bit – and I’ve yet to spend enough time online to figure out what happened – or what was the ‘trigger’ (bad word in these times) —
    Last month I spent one week at my friend’s place in Panama.. because of ‘the storms’ we had the television on a lot – fox news was the only usa news channel she had access to – and oh my goodness.. i got so weary of listening to all of the junk while waiting on morsels of information about the storms…. i don’t know how any of you out there in the real world can deal with the overload of what to me is mostly junk… it should send everyone’s blood pressure through the roof and accelerate stressful conditions…
    Yet, when a crisis hits, it’s amazing of its powers to erase boundaries and put people on a soul-to-soul level.. the kindness and goodness of mankind is there – just many are calloused or affected by other histories and without realizing it – distance one another…
    Your post is a good one, and I hope that others follow your lead! Stay positive everyone!


    • MoJo
      Sep 28, 2017 @ 21:35:51

      I can’t even imagine what you have seen in your travels. I’m glad that you stay off the bulk of social media. Some of it is wonderful and fun, but so much is so negative or plain garbage. And I don’t know how much of a leader I am. I wrote this because I was getting mad at the garbage I was watching and then had the obvious epiphany that I was watching that stuff out of choice – my choice. I understand the anger about some of it, but I also understand that it does nothing for me if I join that. Nothing gets better that way.

      I love that you are always so full of sunshine. You inspire me sweet girl. 🤗


  3. wakinguponthewrongsideof50
    Sep 28, 2017 @ 21:42:44

    First of all….you’re always right. We’ve established that we are perfect….and this post is perfect!! And honestly, you always exude kindness and warmth and strength and courage!!xo


  4. foodzesty
    Sep 28, 2017 @ 22:40:18

    I absolutely agree with you 🙂


  5. I tripped over a stone.
    Sep 29, 2017 @ 13:21:13

    Beautifully written! I think the ‘media’ relies on reporting bad things, often to frighten us into taking our eye off the ball. That ball is we are living in the land of opportunity where faith spirituality, kindess, and good will remain the most prevalent in this country of ours. Where if you reach out, there will be someone reaching back to help you. The majority of us are happy, healthy and love and receive love. But that is not news… the 5% of the pospulation that creates the squeaky wheel gets the attention. Don’t bother with fear filled stories, because that is what they are meant to do, fill us with fear… you’ve been through REAL fear Jo, there is nothing to be afraid of anymore. ~Kim


    • MoJo
      Sep 29, 2017 @ 14:01:46

      I don’t blame the media. It’s like the junk in magazines. They give the people what they want. I just don’t want that anymore. Love your words as always darling. ❤️


  6. D. Wallace Peach
    Oct 04, 2017 @ 08:14:07

    Lovely post. It does seem that tragedy brings out the best. Now we just need to remember that when times are mediocre. 🙂


  7. Jo Price
    Aug 15, 2018 @ 19:37:36

    I will absolutely buy it if no one else beats me to it! I know that it will sell, but juuuuust in case fate pics me, the answer is yes yes yes!!


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