Just thinking about the state of the world and how I wish so many things could be mended and remembering that I've heard that love is the answer. To every problem. Love. I wonder what I'd say in my speech if I was Miss Universe 2013. I've never had the chance to write such a speech or to win such a contest, but what if I did...what would I say? It's a tough call. Would I say 'love is the answer'?
Love will set us free. Love will put us back on track. Love will mend the broken hearted and cause the wounded earth to heal. Is love enough? I can understand the philosophy of love being enough...I really can. If everything we do is through the lens of love then we will be constantly thinking about the consequences of our actions on others and on our home planet Earth. How many people would listen to a message like that one? It might need to be a bit more hard-hitting, although that one is probably making the toughest call of all. To do everything through the lens of love would simply be the greatest challenge possible for most of us. We are selfish beings for the most part. We want. We want. We want. We think we need. People say I need a new Iphone. I need some new boots. I need. Most of the time these people have various and ample modes of communication but they are just not satisfied unless they have the latest and the greatest. Even when they have that, satisfaction is fleeting because the very clever marketers are soon busy selling the next model, and suddenly the 'marvel that was' has lost its sheen and become the has-been of whatever it was...giving rise to further imagined need.
Boots. I need boots. How many of us that say that really need boots. Need. I have to say right now that I'd like a pair of dress boots. It would be nice to have them. If I wasn't sponsoring a little girl in East Timor then maybe I could have bought some by now. But I will not give up helping that little person for boots. Who could imagine what happened to me recently. Someone bought me a pair of walking boots. Took me to the camping store and bought me the best pair of boots on the rack. Two hundred and fifty dollars worth. Far out! Who could have guessed that someone would choose to do that? I didn't ask but there they were. The most beautiful walking boots I've ever seen. Mine. I didn't really need walking boots. But now that I have them I can tackle some of the great walks I've thought about doing...in greater comfort and style. I have to say that they are probably not the sort of thing Miss Universe would wear, but they suit me fine. As for dress boots - I have in mind a nice pair of flat soled stylish smart black boots; perhaps long ones that I could wear with a skirt if I ever got one. I saw a very attractive pair recently - black with a brown cuff on the top. Haha I'm a jeans and sweater kind of girl really, but now and then it's nice to dress up and sometimes it's necessary to dress up for professional reasons...like interviews and meetings. In the meantime I have shoes that will do.
I see pictures of people online and on tv that have need. Real need. They need food. They need shelter. They need comfort. They need support. They need family. They need friends. They need help.They need people to stop warring around them and dropping germ bombs. They need to have a way to remove land mines from their country so that children and adults don't have their limbs blown off. That is need. The rest is want. If we got rid of wanting then perhaps we could also get rid of need. Perhaps if we weren't quite so concerned about having the latest and greatest, but just about being reasonably warm, dry, comfortable and clothed, perhaps we could help more of the people who really need it. What do you think? What would you be willing to go without to help someone else? Someone you didn't know? Someone who was different to you? Someone who spoke a different language, had different beliefs to yours or who had different coloured skin. Is there anything in your life that you'd be willing to give up or cut back on in order to ease someone else's suffering. Sometimes I think the thing that stops us is fear. Love is the opposite of fear. But fear is the thing that makes us say things like...I don't give to charity because it doesn't get to the people who need it. I could say that about the bit I give each month for the little girl in East Timor. I could. But I don't. I choose to believe that it helps her to have a better life. It might not be a lot better but if it's helping her to get some sort of education then it has to be a good thing. I will keep giving as long as I'm able. Sometimes when bills come in I have to suspend the payments for a couple of months. The charity is very good about it and they keep me in touch with the same little girl regardless.
I struggle when I see so much need. I think that I can't make a difference. That's fear too. Fear that stops us from doing something. I can't fix everything but I can fix something. I can help someone in some small way and so I will. I have friends who are doing amazing and wonderful things...setting up orphanages or schools and raising awareness on all sorts of issues. Sometimes I think they are so great and I am so small...there is nothing I can do. But that is wrong thinking. All of us can do something to make the world a better place for someone else. Sometimes our efforts might be rejected or put down but don't let that stop you from doing what you can. Some folks just like to discourage others. Perhaps they feel guilty when they see you trying to make a difference. Don't wear it. Do what you believe is right. Life is not a popularity contest.
If I was Miss Universe I'd say:
Love more. Want less. Give more. Help more. Smile more. Hug more. Be encouraged. You can make a difference. Right where you are. When you can't do something yourself, support others who can. Love yourself. Love your friends. Love your family. Love your job. Love your work colleagues. Love the planet. Love. Thank you.