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passive cowardice

I am a coward. Worse, I am a passive coward. Not only do I not speak out when injustice happens, but I let the injustice slide on by and drift into the “can’t do anything about it anyway” bin.

Not this time.

Another school shooting happened this week, not, what? little more than a week from the last one? This time it happened in a Maryland school. A kid shooting at kids. Yeah, it was only one kid who got killed. Yes, one other student got hit by gunfire. Good that the officer on duty stopped the shooter before others were hurt or killed. It was still traumatic, senseless, and left more grieving parents and families to wonder why, more school officials wondering how to make their school safe. (Not safer. SAFE.)

Ho Hum. Another day at the school lottery firing range.

When is it enough?

When do the adults in this country do what we’ve watched our young ones do? When do we start kicking and screaming and pointing fingers and demanding that something be done to stop this?

Someone said to me the other day, “Nobody in Washington will do anything to move a solution forward until one of their own is shot or killed.”

Seriously???

We’re waiting for the right kid(s) to become targets so somebody will do something?

Pathetic!

And this is even more pathetic. When the young people started their movement, calling attention to their own need to feel safe, what did this coward do?

I sat on my comfortable sofa in my comfortable living room, drink beside me, and applauded these brave young lads and lassies. I applauded these male and female Davids going against the unmoving, unbending, locked into place Goliaths in Congress. And I cried. I cried because I’m not smart enough, wise enough, courageous enough, energetic enough, to join them. To yell, No More. And I prayed. I prayed for the dead, the wounded in spirit as well as body, and I asked God to let it end.

He told me this was our task. He said He would help if we asked for His help, but that we had pretty much forgotten about Him and He also reminded me that the mess we’re in is the mess we created.

I have no idea if making twenty-one the legal age to buy guns, or outlawing the sale of the super weapons and bump stocks to general public or doing extensive background checks or any of the other suggested possibilities will help. But it is a place to start. Doing nothing is just that. Nothing. And the way I see it, there are way too many people sitting in the hallowed halls of Congress doing that. And the ball really is in their court.

There have to be national standards regulating guns. Guns kill. Don’t feed me that stupidity about it’s people with guns who kill. That is a true statement. But if the people who would do harm to other people had a harder time getting the guns they would use to kill, there would be far less killing. Guns kill. They kill because they were made to do just that, whether for hunting bear or hunting students. They kill.

While I’m on the soapbox here, let me say the idea of arming classroom teachers is about the dumbest idea I’ve heard. I come from a family of teachers, and I can’t imagine any one of them ever becoming a pistol packin’ mama or papa. I realize it only takes one good shot to take down an aggressor, but I wonder how many semi-trained teachers could fire that one good shot?

Last thing: I’m not writing this to start an argument with anyone. I’m writing this because something has gone terribly wrong in our beautiful world and I want us to do something about it. I do believe prayer is a good place to start. God not only loves us, He listens, and if we ask for His help, He’ll give it, in ways I can’t begin to imagine. He’s God. He’ll figure it out.

And I’m really tired of being a passive coward.

 

 

THIS LITTLE LIGHT OF MINE

I’ll say it up front. This blog is all about God.

During this season of Lent, I made a resolution to begin each day with Dynamic Catholic.com.
It’s a website hosted by Matthew Kelly, the inspired head of the Dynamic Catholic organization, and it offers a question or statement each of the forty days of Lent about who we are, what we want, our values, and our role in life, all in relation to God’s plan for us.

Recently, Matthew asked the question, “Why do we complicate things?”

 It isn’t a simple question. It’s all tied up in who we think we are, what we think we should be doing, and most important, what, really, are we here for?

Right now, this minute, I don’t have answers. I want to know what God wants me to do. I want to be the person he wants me to be and I want to know that I am alive for a reason.

I know the Catholic catechism clearly spells it out. We’re here to know, love, and serve God. Easy?

No. Complicated. We live in a materialistic world , a world of “me,” where it’s too tempting to ride the wave of more instead of enough. God gets pushed aside so we can exercise that little freedom to choose thing and what’s easy is forgetting that we each have a purpose in life, that God always has his eyes on us, that he loves us unconditionally and that, if asked, he’ll guide us through the maze of life.

I like simple. I like the idea of God being in charge. It’s actually a relief. Thing is, liking it, wanting it to happen and letting it happen are different. See? Complicated. But I’ll keep listening for the Voice that guides and one of these mornings when I’m watching the shadows give way to the sun and thinking about whatever God question Matthew Kelly asks me to think about, I might see the light, no, feel the light, God’s light, shine into me and radiate out, so it might touch others.

Wouldn’t it be something if we allowed God’s light to fill us up and spill into those around us so it multiplies thousands of times?

Now that would be uncomplicated.

 

 

Zucchini and Sweet Corn Fritters

This is a great recipe to keep and pass along. So happy to share a fun, tasty blog.

More Than A Dash Of Salt

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After posting quite a few delicious  – but admittedly not so healthy – recipes lately I figured it was time I posted a healthier snack.

I have always been a fan of zucchini fritters. You manage to consume a good portion of veggies in a serving but the fritters themselves don’t taste particularly healthy – in fact, to me, they have always tasted a little bit like savoury pancakes.

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IT MIGHT BE SPRING . . . And Then Again . . . .

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If Winter and Spring were two of Mother Nature’s four children, I’d picture them as twins, boy and girl.

Winter, the only boy of the four, is mischievous and teasing, sometimes rough and unkind, in everybody’s face, testing his powers during the season given him by his mother.  I can see him sculpting ice fantasies one day, snow castles the next, tiring of it all sometimes, allowing his sister Spring’s sun to burn through the cold, but never for long.

Spring would have her hands full, keeping her brother within his boundaries, out of hers, practicing patience while waiting for her turn to rule. As the seasons begin to merge, she tests his waning strength, subtly encouraging snow melt by increasing the warmth of the sun.

Winter responds with tantrums that explode into late snows and icy rain, and the new sprouts who’ve answered Spring’s call, curl back into the ground. Spring doesn’t cave. She boxes Winter’s ears with warmth and blue skies. Finally, Winter yawns and sinks into his cozy corner to sleep until his sister, Autumn, wakes him.

It’s fantasy, I know, but the give and take of winter/spring this time of year is maddening, with seventy degrees one day, dipping to thirty the next. The roses think it’s spring, and I wonder if their tender new leaves will survive this late surge of cold. Daffodils, hyacinth, crocus, and snowbells brighten gardens today, but a late snow will destroy the blooms. Our meteorologists say this dip won’t last but also warn that the roller coaster ride of warm/cold is probably not over yet.

So giving the seasons personality and building a story around them . . . well, that’s what writers do, right? Besides, It helps make this unsettled weather pattern more acceptable.

But I wish Spring would get on with it and send her brother to his corner to sleep.

Sometimes Learning Comes Hard . . . Very Hard!

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Just so you know — writing a blog is easy. Making the blog look appealing is another whole ballgame. There’s a strange, new language to translate into understandable words. Widget? HTML? Codes? Tags? Categories? Stats?

In the beginning, it was all about the words. Blogging was fun, sort of putting thoughts about things that mattered into an open diary that anyone could read and go “uh-huh” or not. It was good.

Then came the learning about STATS. I learned that each one of my blogs had a page full of statistics. How many people looked at my posts? Read them? Liked them? Commented about them?

Oh. My.

My blog is a free one, through WordPress.com. They do all the right things, like giving help and advice and nudges to help along the way. They do blogging courses, online, that help new people like me get started, and they try, really try, to make blogging fun and, well, to make blogs interesting and invite followers.

Back to Stats. I like to blog. I love words. I like to share my thoughts. The stats showed not much sharing going on. Must be something I’m doing wrong?

Well, yes. For starters, how about the title? I could probably improve on “CBrodtrick – Writing Senior.”

I spent an afternoon playing with phrases, finally choosing “Affinity For Life.” After checking other people’s blogs, I found they almost always used a tag line. So I added “Everything Matters – Some Things Just Matter More.”

And since it’s pretty certain my mind does wander all over the place and some things do matter enough to write about, I decided the title and tag line might just work.

Then. . .my blog looked pretty blah. Not much color. A lot of words on white. Back to WordPress for some searching. I found I could customize my free site to a certain extent – add some color and a favorite picture of one of our gardens. It did improve things a bit. However, there was more learning to come.

What were widgets?

I found out they’re those things you add to make a blog more interesting, like an author bio and favorite bloggers’ blogs and — well, I’m still figuring widgets out.

And that’s where I am now. Still learning. The stats will tell me if you like the improvements you see, and comments always help.

Future blogs will have more changes, I’m sure, as the language of blogging gets easier to understand. But, old fashioned as I am, I still do believe it’s the thoughts behind the words inside the dressed up blog that entice a reader.