I've been trying to compose this for about a week now.
Here's how it started:
I was waiting for my bus home after work last monday when I pretty much started crying out of nowhere. Or so it would seem, because there's not much wrong with my life. things are okay! I have a great roommate, a funny cat that keeps me perpetually entertained, I love my new apartment, I had a perfect birthday party recently... I have a kinda sucky job that's true but really who cares because in a matter of weeks I'll be attending college full time and truly on my way to making my dreams come true. I have great friends (although I miss them all like crazy because everyone's so busy and my schedule is a mess...). So there I am with an okay life crying with such deep sorrow that it actually hurts physically. And to be completely honest I have not completely recovered.
It's this world, you see. the pain, the suffering, the hate, the isolation, the greed and anger... it's just all too much. I want to help make this world a better place, a nicer place in whatever small "pay it forward" ways that I can and as grand a scale as humanly possible. i feel it's my responsibility, as an individual with certain advantages that I've done nothing to deserve. I am a blessed person, in so many ways but especially in the sense that as often as I have been knocked down and had the crap kicked out of me by the world I've always been able to start over in a better place than I'd ever attained. Like so many of the people in my life I just never give in and believe what forces seem to want me to believe about myself. And I have so many people reminding me of just who I am. But this inner 'strength' is not something I claim credit for and these blessings I have not earned. But it's soooo hard. What can I do? I have no power, no clout. I can sign petitions and pass them on. I can buy wrist bands and install banners on my blog. I can start a career (in 16 months) that will be all about helping people improve the quality of their lives. I can recycle. I can reduce. I can conserve energy and not be driven to consume what the media tells me I should covet, and I can buy local and take transit. I can drink fair trade and organic coffee... the list you know it goes on. But I'm only one and everyday I still see water bottles and pop cans and paper in garbage cans. People still buy SUVs (?!?!?!). And everyday I see Corporate interests given more consideration than basic human necessities. Good people buy products everyday from companies that are exploiting entire nations of the disenfranchised poor. everyday I see the bombings and wars and beautiful cities destroyed. children die and some become monsters robbed of childhood, AIDS is still spreading and killing worldwide. Every person who loves also hates, we all deal angrily with others when we are angry at ourselves. We are silent when our spouse clearly needs the companionship and love we promised at the altar. We judge those who just have the misfortune of a different weakness then our own.
all is vanity. there is nothing new under the sun.
Ecclesiastes 12:13 in the Amplified Bible says: All has been heard; the end of the matter is: Fear God [revere and worship Him, knowing that He is] and keep His commandments, for this is the whole of man [the full, original purpose of his creation, the object of God's providence, the root of character, the foundation of all happiness, the adjustment to all inharmonious circumstances and conditions under the sun] and the whole [duty] for every man.
What does that mean? Does that mean I shouldn't care at all? Just put my head down and keep God's commandments and God will bless me and to hell with anyone else? that doesn't feel right, that's not my God. God clearly values rooted character, individual and collective happiness and adjustments to all inharmonious circumstances under the sun. It is the duty of all men. Jesus Christ bled compassion and love. and he told his disciples that as great as his works were, the works they would do would be greater.
I think I need to find a balance. I need to care and I need to love but I also need to be able to enjoy the blessings that are in my life - my roommate, my cat, my friends, my family, my awesome circle of believers. Then and only then can I withstand what the world weighs.