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Posts Tagged ‘life’

Ever want to be an adult and child all at the same time?  Then visit Walt Disney’s Downtown Disney!

No, this is not an advertisement.  It’s a testimony.  Downtown Disney has a Marketplace and Pleasure Island and fun than the law should allow.  There is every kind of food you can eat and under conditions that only someplace with the name Disney could provide.  It’s a delight for the heart and the eyes.  But, see just a little of the excitement I tried to capture in these few photos below.  After that, don’t live through my experience, go visit Downtown Disney for yourself!

Who was Eating Who in Jurassic Park

Run!!!! Oh, it's not really alive?

What are those people eating?

Grab your Food and let's make a quick get-away!

I'm a Sea Serpent made of how many Lego pieces?

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“Though the vicious can sometimes pour affliction upon the good,

their power is transient and their punishment certain;

and that innocence,

though oppressed by injustice,

shall,

supported by patience,

finally triumph over misfortune!”

(From The Mysteries of Udolpho, 1794)

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True art evolves us — opens our arms and weakens our prejudices so that the ever-present seeds of healing and renewal can take root in our soul.

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     Living always somewhere between agreement and disagreement, we lack the comforts and the torments of divine authority and regal power.  Pl;uralistic, we struggle with the idea of unity.  We reach awkwardly for shared purpose.  We talk sentimentally of community, sometimes, as though it could be had without sacrifice — as though order were possible without restraint.  We are nostalgic about the idea of community.  We lust for its consolations. -Robert J. Kingston

Possibly on a collective basis, we should rethink this idea that individually we can make it anywhere.  It is first understanding and then living in the harmony of community that we are going to be – literally – saved.

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Many in the world were glued to their TV sets today watching the royal wedding of Prince William Arthur Philip Louis (now Duke of Cambridge) and Kate Middleton (now Duchess of Cambridge).  It was grand and many will say that this is an image of Royal Love.  But, I have another image to share with  you.

Keshia Thomas serving as a Shield
I originally wrote this article on Aug. 5, 2005.  I expand it here using the same title:  Love Makes All the Difference in the World.
A dear friend of mine (Eddie GM Robinson) wrote a song entitled “Love Makes All the Difference” and it is my favorite on that particular CD.  He is a master artist being able to conceptualize and hear the music, write it and play most of the instruments and then sing the lyrics!  I always marvel at the expanse of his talent.   When the work is done right, his listener will automatically select that song from their mental library and associate it immediately with an appropriate event.  Such was the case for me with this song and this event.
On 22 June 2006, there was a Klu Klux Klan rally in Ann Arbor Michigan.  An awesome demonstration of the force of love was captured in a photograph and story published on that day.  (unable to insert photo here).  I will try to relay that image to you here.
At some point between standing and falling, the man on the ground became one with Keshia Thomas.  Her heart opened and Andrew Cutraro (freelance photographer) caught the moment.  Keishia was 18 at the time and we can wonder how and why at 18, this young African-American woman came to be in such a position?
On June 22 in Ann Arbor Michigan, Keishia used her body for the purpose many say Jesus used His – to cover the sins of another.  She shielded a man from a crowd of anti-Klan demonstrators who were beating him with sticks after he was spotted wearing a confederate flag shirt. Ms. Thomas is reported as saying: “Just because you beat somebody, doesn’t mean you going to change his mind.”
Prior to this, it is reported in People magazine, that she was one of the angry demonstrators who rushed toward the man who was reported to be a spectator (not a participator); yet he wore the trappings of a Klan supporter.  As the attackers reached him, the blows, kicks and punches began.  But something happened in an instant inside this Black high school senior from Ypsilanti that caused her to risk injury and throw herself over the fallen man to protect him.  Though she may have thought him to be a white supremacist, Thomas is reported saying: “He’s still somebody’s child.” Later on, Keishia is reported adding: “People don’t have to remember my name. I just want them to remember that I did the right thing.”
Eddie recently released another CD that has a title “Only Give the Best (there is in you)”.  Keshia may not know it or label her action as love, but it was the ultimate expression of the virtue of which the Master teachers have been speaking.  Truly she gave the very “best” there was in her to protect and possibly save someone she did not even know.   She helps us to believe that truly Love does make ALL the difference in the World.
When you think of Royal Love, you can think of William and Kate or you can think of Keshia Thomas whose compassion burst out of its boundaries and demonstrated itself in protecting a stranger.  Thanks Eddie for reminding me.
(Note:  This blog can be found in its original form at Intimate Longings.)
Now is the time, you are the chosen.  You are already prepared.
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On 24 April 2011, MSNBC posted as a file photo from the AP of two young women  of four members of Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps who were working as electoral officials in Daura, Nigeria on day of the presidential elections.  Their job was to check names of individuals presenting themselves to vote.   They are pictured sitting at a table leafing through books and looking serious about their duty with expressions that make parents proud.   It was recently that I found out details about this extraordinary program — Nigeria’s National Youth Service Corps — and that it is a mandatory year-long assignment for all Nigerians who graduate from university before the age of 30. Most serve as teachers during their stint, but the April 2011 national elections have brought extra responsibilities and danger to their work.

I don’t know whether these young women were stationed at the polls the day of the violence or if there were four others who were burned alive inside their youth hostel that day.  All I know is that some ‘thing‘ is loose again and that after all of these centuries that we have been on this planet, we have yet to determine how to contain it.  Whatever its name — hate, fear, greed, anger — we need to focus on it as we have on cancer and other deadly diseases or maybe we need to hire some exorcists because personally, I’m tired of the madness and I just got here a couple of decades ago!!  It was already enough 4,000 years ago.  Have we learned nothing?

I realize that  Daura was not the only place in the world that “it” was loose.  It has shown up in small sleepy little towns and big city metropolises, in simple houses and grand mansions, in the workplace and on the playground, in the school house and in the places of worship.  It seems that “it” has no boundaries. Who is letting “it” in?  How can we recognize “it“?  Where does “it” abide?  We must find “it” and arrest, bind, contain, destroy “it“.

It has no shame, no values, no repentance, no ethics, no morals, and appears to have no end.  Will we, can we survive until another great teacher comes? When will enough sacrifices be made?   Can we reach a critical mass of compassion and love before “it” reaches epidemic proportions?

May I begin with this simple gesture of compassion:  To the friends and families of those young people who had such promising lives and whose dreams were stolen on 16 April 2011, I send my deepest condolences.  May 10,000 others take their place in service to their people.  May they rest in peace knowing that their lives touched so many.  These are only words, but they are messengers from my heart a place where “it does not abide.

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At the peak moments of your life, how did you react?

If you look very closely, you will see people in the lower right-hand corner of the above picture.  They are standing on a mountain that reaches high above the clouds.  I can only imagine how awesome this experience was for them.  However, I too have witnessed and beheld some marvelous sights and heard some angelic sounds during my lifetime.
Fully engaged during those times, I have felt
Humbled
Ecstatic
Blessed
Loved
Awed
Grateful

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