God, love hate and the way of the Jedi

I really thought I did not have much to say last week, so I missed my weekly addition to my blog. I thought I’d give it a break. Yesterday I arrived home and checked my messages. I had a comment to “approve”. I clicked on the email and read this…..

“…You think you are such a great person? You think you can slam a religion? Who cares what happened to you. You probably asked for it. You are a whiny, shitty, little moron. God hates you. Your hole site is propaganda against god. Stop writing, no one cares.

And who cares about Disneyland and star wars anyway? LAME! Fuck U!….”

It was sent by someone named “Christ is Lord”. Fine, whatever. Obviously someone with a chip on their shoulder and perhaps a little unbalanced. But then I heard on the radio about the shootings today in California. I have been coming to terms with the shootings in Paris. The violence in Africa and the Middle East. Everywhere, it seems, there is hate. But there is also love.

My parents did not put me in a Catholic school because they wanted bad things to happen to me – far from it. Hopeless was (and is) a rough town. It’s one of those towns where – if you don’t leave should you actually finish high school – you will likely stay in forever. Some people love it. I do not. It was a town where I was too afraid to really live in, or be seen. It was a town of fear, hate and oppression (for me). I was happy to leave. I know people who still live there, and I wish them well. There are nice things about it. For me, no.

The purpose of my blog is to share my story – to reach out and perhaps provoke thought and discussion. I knew I might get flack, but it always stings when you actually receive it. I had an anonymous phone call a few months ago seething with hate towards me about my story. And now this comment from C.I.L.

I am sorry to disappoint you if you are like C.I.L., and his/her thoughts towards my entries and me. I am not stopping. I am not easily threatened. I grew up in a tough town and I survived ordeals that I hope people do not go through. I am a survivor and…a Jedi. My thoughts are my own. You are entitled to yours. I welcome you to come forward and challenge me appropriately. Certainly you are allowed to believe what you will. But, since you call yourself Christ is Lord, please take time to reflect upon these lessons from your bible…

First John 4:7-8 “Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.  Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love.”

And to you I ask you to reflect on this…

Matthew 5:44-45 “But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous.”

Please know I am not going to return your hate with hate. That is not the answer.

As for others reading this, I ask you to not get caught up in the fear and hate circulating so fervently on social media. The world is a frightening place – an evil place, a terrifying place. But it is also what our minds make of it. John Milton eloquently wrote “The mind is its own place and in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven.” We essentially have the power to create what we will and allow that to become reality. I struggle with making a heaven of hell. My mind is more than willing to go to the dark places of the past, finding new closed doors to open and dwell in the terrors that lurk within. But there are good times in the past. I am who I choose to be. So, whoever you are, C.I.L., I hope one day you find peace. I hope you stop trolling people and unleashing your hate. Choose what you will, but I will not be frightened by you.

Love is the answer.

 

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