Sunday Calm: Somewhere Far Way

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I’m still pulling from my Florida files because the weather has been so grey that I haven’t gotten out to capture the beautiful unfolding of Spring here in Michigan. This morning I sat on my purple porch swing, the warm sun on my face, not thinking about my garden that I can hear growing right in front of me. I’m not even thinking about going out on a photography jaunt.

No, Jesus help me, I’ve been thinking about politics. I’m not sure if my prayer for the help of Jesus is to stop me from thinking about the scary place we seem to be in, politically speaking, or to help me clarify my thoughts so I can speak out clearly and convincingly – at least to a few people who need to hear what I’m thinking.

That is where I am on this Sunday morning. Someplace between the calm of having a scone overlooking the lily pond at the Naples Botanical Garden and thinking through what I would need to say if I was willing to pull myself out of my need for calm and peace long enough to fulfill my civic responsibility. We will see what happens.

Water Lily Network

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I am intrigued with the structural features of this water lily plant. For a flower that is loved for its grace and beauty, it sure has a hearty, prickly structure. As I was sitting on a bench on the boardwalk over the Water Garden in the Naples Botanical Garden, I watched the giant lily pad floating across the back side of this plant. It was attached by one the large stems and was moving with the current.

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This brings to mind systems theory – how in complex systems the whole is more than the sum of the parts. In these times when some people are trying to tell us to be afraid of non-whites who want to come into the country, I am reminded of the history of the creativity and the industriousness of immigrants who have come to our country in order to fulfill their dreams of creating a better life for their families and society.

Once again I remember an important belief that I hold, a belief that when we welcome new people in, when we build up the least among us by celebrating and supporting the strengths they bring to our communities, when we build strong connections of mutual respect and caring, everyone wins. I do not believe that we are a zero sum society where if you are invited in, I am pushed out. I may be a pollyanna, but I believe when people of all colors, all nationalities, all incomes join hands and work hard together we will be a better society, a better country.

I also believe we need more people in policy-making positions that believe this way. How you vote will have an impact on what type of society we will have in the future.