cover by Keyur Panchal, Keep Picturing
My faith helps me understand
that circumstances don’t dictate
my happiness, my inner peace.
– Denzel Washington
Rise of the Dynasty
by Renan Javier
One Life to Live
written & edited by Kendall F. Person
One Until we stop, we have no idea how tall we will grow. Until we quit, the sky remains the limit on high we can soar. Until we wake up, how do we know that the world has not stopped. And until we die, we will never know how long we will live. Chance may be a bettor’s sport, one we wish not to play, but even though we live separate lives, we are all in the same game. A drunken driver may tempt chance, that they are feeling fine. Travelling on the road again, excited to get back home, obeying every traffic rule, clean and sober still, hands on nine and three, safety belt secure. One mile till the off ramp and only four blocks from there, but our game collides with the drunken driver and in an instant, ghosts appear. There are aspects we cannot control.
But we can control our internal vision, the self inside with goals and ambitions, the person who believes in goodness and in salvation, the one who comprehends that all men are created equal, the thinking being that understands, freewill accounts for our differences and respect allows for our understanding. And if we smile in the mirror, the smiling face we see, delivers visual confirmation, that our prayers have been answered, delivering the strength the day will need.
We embrace motivational speeches and enjoy the sound of care free quotes and movies with happy endings, but most days come equipped with an agenda: children to raise and bills to pay and obligations that must be met, forcing our external reality to be at odds with our inner self. A tug of war is not an option. We feel the peace of our internal vision, slip back into its slumber, and we cannot chase it to where it is going, because we are already late for work. Peace turns into disillusion, which morphs into blame, then finds comfort in anger. We falsely believe we have been abandoned, so the external forces begin to bombard us, and we give way to our differences, spending precious moments filled with rage and standing in judgement of one another, and all the while, the clock never stops ticking and chipping away at our one life to live.
The day ends and we have made no progress on our dreams nor have we given our internal vision a larger role. But until the world stops spinning or the sun falls out of the sky or our Higher Power declares His vengeance or chance zeroes in on us, the morning arrives and our inner vision will awaken, another chance to follow and become the person we are inside. Not perfect nor a blissful euphoric, but one that fills external obligations, while not succumbing, but the one that believes world peace is possible, and we are never to old to chase dreams and make new friends. We have the wisdom to understand who we are – a small but intricate piece of humanity – and each place we find ourselves, in the pews of our churches or in houses of strangers, we try to make a contribution toward peace. In every precious free moment of this one life we have to live, listen to our internal vision, the one that sees the beauty in everything. One
– Kendall F. Person, thepublicblogger