Encouragement for weary hearts 39


For all appearances, it would look like we can’t win this. We’re up against practically unlimited corporate and lobby money. We’re up against a team of well-connected people with motives for profit and power. We’re up against misogyny, racism, intolerance, fear, and base meanness. Slowly, we watch the pillars of democracy erode.

Spoiler alert: This is supposed to look impossible.

A song from David Wilcox plays on a loop in my mind almost daily,

“There is evil cast around us, but it’s love that wrote the play.”

I love this, because it gives me perspective. And as a writer, I know that the appearance of hopelessness is vital to a compelling plot. In a play, the outrageous evildoer sets up the necessary tension for the heroes and heroines to reach within themselves to bring about a positive resolution. In other words, the appearance of impossibility is essential for us—you and me. We are on a hero’s journey.

But here’s the thing: we have in our quiver a tool that none in power do—and never will: love. We’re passionate about equality and justice and fairness for everyone. We care about our neighbors, no matter our differences. We believe in decency, cooperation, and kindness. We share a love for this beautiful planet, our common home, and all its inhabitants.

So although it may look daunting out there, our hearts are equipped with something so much more powerful than greed. We have love. And love, as we know, can accomplish all things. Even with unlikely odds.

If your spirit is flagging, take heart. Each of us carries love within—the most powerful source of perseverance. Keep remembering that it’s supposed to look impossible, but that doesn’t mean it actually is impossible. If we stick together, keep speaking up for one another, and focus our energies on living our values, this drama will end in justice and healing.

Love,
Jen


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39 thoughts on “Encouragement for weary hearts

  • Christina Lee

    Perfect timing, I almost didn’t realize how much I needed this, thank you! This week brings us the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Dr Martin Luther King, the plight of the Dream and the “Dream”ers, and so much else that is, at the very least, demoralizing. Your words arrived as a parallel stantion to Dr King’s “buoyancy of hope” and that in turning to God we might fear and worry less by moving away from wanting “this cup” in King’s words, to pass and make “the transition to “nevertheless.” Your words remind me that there are many of us who are together in purpose, with and for each other with justice and peace in our hearts and overcoming the seemingly impossible!

  • Catherine Burnett

    This is exactly what my soul needed to hear on a blustery, windswept Easter morning on the Olympic Peninsula. Thank you, Jennifer!

  • Nancy North

    Thank you. Your positive energy and perseverance is inspiring. Thank you for all the research and information you provide.

  • Tricia B.

    Thank you. I too believe that this is all serving the purpose of raising us to more love and inclusivity – and it is inspiring to have statements like yours be presented as reminders that – if the journey were easy, we wouldn’t be challenged to our best growth! Blessings Jen!

    Tricia

  • Judy

    This is beautiful . . . so true, and so comforting. Thank you. It’s a perfect message for this Easter Sunday. Taking a line from another beautiful human being, MLK, “we shall overcome.”

  • eileen campbell

    My deepest thanks and respect for what you and other leaders are doing to inspire, mobilize and instruct the rest of us so we may collectively effect the change we believe is essential for the health of our nation and future generations.

  • Syd

    No matter one’s religion or creed, your message is at the heart of all. Count me in as a believer in your words. Love will win in the end.

  • Kate Munger

    I loved your last sentence. May I have your permission to write a tune for those hopeful words?
    “If we stick together, keep speaking up for one another, and focus our energies on living our values, this drama will end in justice and healing.” Thanks, Kate

  • John Alessi

    So often one may feel down, but there is always something that gives me hope, you are one of those somethings, thanks.

  • Joan Baily

    Thank you for digging deeper on this day which is April Fools Day and Easter with Passover throw into the Mix……You lifted my spirits. Peace and blessings!

  • Tori Bloxom

    Encouragement is appreciated! I remind myself that is is in the darkest of times that humans tend to unite and rise to a higher character. Sometimes it takes a thing, and act, a terrible happening that shakes us awake and makes us re-orient our moral compass. .

  • Diana Veazey

    Thank you for your encouragement. Appreciate so much your words of inspiration. They always seem to come at just the time I need them most.

  • Katherine Doerr

    Thank you for your wise words about sticking together. I firmly believe that “what goes around, comes around” and it is taking too long! So let’s all keep the faith and not give up so easily. We have a lot to gain and nothing to lose!

  • Ann

    Thank you for this encouragement. I do need to remember this from time to time. The Parkland students have also given me hope. Thanks for helping us who want to resist know some ways to do so.

  • Katie Dahl

    I have loved that song for a long time and think of it all the time!

    Look
    If someone wrote a play
    To just to glorify what’s stronger than hate
    Would they not arrange the stage
    To look as if the hero came too late?
    He’s almost in defeat
    It’s looking like the evil side will when
    So on the edge of every seat
    From the moment that the whole thing begins

  • Rev. Barbara Jung

    I have a CD of Michael Gott singing that song and it does inspire me also.
    Thank you for your encouragement. I am working for an amazing female
    candidate for the primary coming up and it keeps me believing that I can make
    a difference.

  • Glenda

    Thank you, Jen, for this important and beautifully-written reminder.
    .
    I don’t know how to send you an email directly, so I’m leaving this here – an interview in NYT with BLM activist Ashley Yates, and the importance of “self-care”. https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/28/insider/black-lives-matter-stress.html
    excerpt:
    I asked Ms. Yates, who moved to Oakland a couple of years back to work as an activist full time, if she ever had the urge to just say forget it, and take her college degree and go into a traditional profession. Of course she did, she told me, especially when you see someone dropping dead at 27 of a heart attack.
    “It’s absolutely scary,” said Ms. Yates, 32. “It’s enough to make you want to quit.”
    But more than just reflecting on the difficulties of activism and the trauma that comes with it, Ms. Yates ventured into another area that I had not thought about: self-care.
    As it turns out, taking care of yourself is a big issue in the present movement, unlike in times past. There are trained “healers” in communities who run workshops and do private counseling for activists. Ms. Yates started seeing a therapist about a year ago. She also talked about the things that seem small but can make a big difference for her: going to the ocean, putting her toes in sand, remembering to eat, taking time to talk with her friends about things that have nothing to do with activism. Some of these might seem obvious, but for those immersed in the work, that’s not always the case.