It’s amazing what one image will do…to me anyway!
I was on this photo shoot project for a Cub Scout Crossing Over Ceremony and as I looked through my lens at these boys being promoted to the next level in their growth as a scout, ascending to a new level of experience and training, it took me back 25 years when my boys were in scouting and I was a scout leader.
The time and effort to support a child in a scout program is not really much, I thought initially, however, there are specific codes to follow, ceremonies, new traditions introduced, equipment to purchase and time off from working some weekends. Then there is the example my children are being taught in scouts and the example seeing me live by at home. It was teaching me, testing my actions and my new challenges. I saw quickly there must be continuity between them both if I am to be a successful leader and father. So in my effort to capture a memory for an important event for this scout troop, I also brought back some pleasant ones of time passed which brought me peace, hope and Love.
Peace, because I remember being consistent in my participation and commitment to my children’s program and their happiness. Hope, because of the activities, motto’s and traditions which helped my children gain respect for themselves and the person standing next to them, stood to be as tools to guide them in the years to come. Love, because I watched my boys compete at first but slowly learning about selflessness, sharing and collaborating to reach a goal as an individual and as a team. I knew this was something I could look forward to seeing in them as they became adults. No matter how far they go off the path of right things or compromise what they know to be correct and true, these things they learned while they were young would always be a part of who they are and be that voice from within when I am no longer there to guide them.
Rewind and playback, I believe it is an understatement to say Saturday’s woman’s march was a success. From the moment I entered the freeway it felt more like a weekday, with freeway congestion all the way from the east side, Bellevue, to Seattle across Lake WA. It was more congested than when the Huskies have a playoff or either of the ball club stadiums downtown.
On the slow moving exit to the park where it all was scheduled to begin, the view of a makeshift homelessness camp taking over the entire area of the exit. You get a 360 view of the camp and feel the sorrow of yet another societal need still prevalent.
Men, women and children jumping out of their cars at the base of the exit, so the driver is left to struggle finding a place to park alone. There is a steady stream of march participants making their way up the long path to the park raising above the traffic.
As I made my way to the park area it was clear I would never be successful finding a place to park and unload my camera gear. so I headed beyond to the first corner of the march where it will turn and head for downtown, Jackson Street & 23rd Ave S. There I found a spot to park at a Starbucks Coffee store.
Once setup I began my witness of the demographics, the mood and tempo of this event. I felt as if I were at a big family BBQ making my way to the feast. Just about every group I can name was represented here. The young and old, families together with their small children participating in an event where it was not rude to express yourself and your thoughts. Our legacy and future are our children and they were very present at this event, participating in exercising free will and true Democracy at its core. Many of the signage carried by the young ones displayed a message they themselves crafted.
I felt the consistent pulse of the crowd as peaceful, their mood one of support and unity for each other, the man, women, child or elderly, shoulder to shoulder, front and back, next to you. This went on and on for over an hour before I packed up and went on my way. I believe this march was truly a successful one and I felt the collaborative spirit of a united people come out to share the day, with one voice, together.
I recently lost a church friend of mine.
She was always involved in something at church, a member of several groups and on a few boards. I never saw her sitting at the table with others at events, without first seeing her helping in the kitchen, making ready the meal and various offerings for the meal and side dishes. During most church services she was either playing bells, singing in the choir, passing out bulletins, leading worship, serving communion, or any number of duties requiring assistance.
My friend was to me, one of the best examples of selflessness, long suffering, goodness and a desire to worship the Lord with all she was and will ever be. She made me push forward at times when I was frustrated with many things in life, not related to church, just social injustice and the brevity of a good man’s work and life story. I don’t see many rushing in to take her place, albeit there will be one who will.
In dedication to my friend, I produced a video, sharing little portals of her life and her work, a small fraction of the many duties and service she gave to God and us all. I will not forget her nor the mark on my heart for which her role played in my life, the example I want to follow in without measure, with the same long suffering.
Join me in remembering….
I received this video from a new acquaintance / friend…….
I am convinced it is only through the many eyes of those who suffer, telling their compelling story which moves us to compassion, however, it is through music and artistic imagery that takes us to that next step, actively looking for the path to real “change” and then following it! Peace does not come without suffering and struggle, but taking that journey together with others of like minds, removing the borders of belief and custom, to become a powerful force to follow…
Take that journey with me. Go to the link provided below:
Today I was assisting one of my senior clients in the Wells Fargo Bank on Pacific Ave, when I saw the motorcycle officer stop at the street corner just outside the bank. I grabbed my camera and was able to catch a few stills and moments of the quiet somber passing of police cars. My heart goes out for the families involved and I pray for comfort and healing.
Honoring Fallen Office Jay Gutierrez
We read about these happenings going on before our eyes, we have a choice; we can accept them and be as sheep following our new shepherd blindly, or we can hold up the standard of excellence and truth via social media as a mirror to show the way that is correct and honest and fair.
Without making a choice we are without a voice and we become a victim to whatever comes. We lose our right to complain if we do nothing. Standing up and sharing our thoughts helps each person reading to decide for themselves a path to follow.
How will each person know which to chose and how to decide?
Truth and Morality are all about how we respond to Facts and Distinction. The FACT(s) shows us the Truth. Leaders with corrupt vision and blind followers chose to spin and twist that truth or information to suit their own ambitious goals. We each pull out our scales and weigh the damage to our conscience if we chose to follow the twisted truth and become a blind justified follower. When we stay on point and follow Truth, the path that sets us apart from the majority, we become a light and represent conviction and help steer the ones on the fence to rightly decide. When we hold up the standard of Fact and Truth, we become directly involved, go to community meetings where we can ask the questions and participate in steering leaders in the direction of Truth and Fact.
We also become a target for ridicule and criticism for staying on point but that does not matter if you focus on the reason why God put us here on this rock, to make a difference, share His love and be a light that shines in the darkness.
Do we want to chose to help the leaders in power which we love or hate, to feel the pressure of the Fact and Truth or do we stay in the darkness allowing the seeds of corruption to take deep roots. Each one of us, weak or strong we must make a choice! When we do nothing we chose to be the blind follower and we reap the harvest of darkness. When we lift up our voice and share our feelings about the Fact and Truth we see twisted we become that light which causes people to rightly decide and Leaders to listen.
Nothing that is good or right or fair and honest happens quickly, it comes by a labor of conscience and steadfastness. I hope to be a bolder in the stream of life, steadfast in the way of Fact and Truth, causing the water in the stream to split, casting my light in the path to follow. This is my mission: Ask the questions; What choice(s) do I make today? How can I make a difference?