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Yessir, the year 2017 is in the books. Its pages are filled with all of the good and bad that happened to us over that 365 day span and now it is time to forget all of the crap that happened, store away the good memories, and move forward.
2018 brings us a fresh slate. A blank journal with pages waiting to be written on, and chapters waiting to be put down for eternity. What will the new year bring?
Do you think we have a chance to see peace and harmony in our country? In our county maybe? Heck, just even in our town? Can we find a way to put away all of the malice and bickering? Can we possibly learn how to get along with all of our neighbors and “love them as we love ourselves?”
Will the new year bring us a time of closing the divides that separate us? Will the healing rain pour down from the skies and mend the hurts, heal the sick and mend the broken?
Is there a way for us to stop hating a man because of the uniform he wears or stop discriminating against the woman that is busting her butt to shatter the glass ceiling above her? Will we end the pointless categorizing of everyone else in the world and erase what have become derogatory names like millennials, elderly, right wing, leftist, Republican, Democrat, etc?
Could we please eliminate the word “gender” from the English language? I am personally sick of the word and its millions of connotations like gender biased, gender neutral, gender fluid and transgender. Just erase the word from speech altogether and how about we just refer to people, as people, or maybe just call them by their name?
Odds are, we will see none of those things come to pass this new year. It stands to reason that we will continue as a people to ignore what we are told as far as how to treat our fellow man, and at the end of 2018 we will have written yet another book of sadness, ugliness, hate, murder, contempt, shame, prejudice, injustice, and every other form of negative action we can find along the way.
You say, wow Kenny that seems like a negative outlook. And it is. It is because despite what I hope and what we all wish and pray for, we live in a world filled with evil. We live in a time of the worst kinds of evil this world has ever seen. Technology enables the wicked to be more wicked, the ugly to be uglier, and sin to be more rampant.
That said, I am not a negative person, and firmly believe that there will come a time when all of wishes and prayers for a better world will come true. There will be a day when hate will be erased and equality will reign supreme. I just don’t know if 2018 will be the year.
One thing I do know is that I hope it is. It is my most fervent hope that when December 31, 2018 comes around we live in a world filled with peace, and a world that is safer for my kids, and the new grandson I will have this coming Spring.
Maybe that is why I pray harder for those things now. A new child will enter this world in a few months, and just like all of the other new lives that have been born recently like Lacy’s girl Lydia, or Luke’s boy Tripp, my grandson should have the chance to live his life free of discrimination, hate, bullying and strife. He should have the chance to grow up in a country that remembers to respect its President, whoever holds the office, and a country that remembers what it felt like to be united like we were after 9-11.
My new grandson, and Malli, and Talon, children that I love more than life itself, should have the opportunity to learn about the greatness of the United States that once was and grow up to be proud Americans. Maybe that is our problem? Have we forgotten what it was to be a proud citizen of the United States, instead choosing to categorize ourselves into separatist groups, hating anyone that doesn’t agree with our methods or lifestyle?
Perhaps, we all need to simplify. I ask again, can we learn to live in peace by simply re-learning what it is like to live by the precepts in the Bible and the basic tenets of decency and love?
Can 2018 be the year that we see a shift back to decency and kindness?
How about this. On day one, fill your first page with a random act of kindness. Do something nice for a stranger, just because. Then on day two, do the same. On day three, do it again. Then on day four, five, six, seven…all the way to 365. Find yourself on December 31, 2018 with a book filled with 365 pages of good deeds, acts of kindness, and love for your fellow man.
What a book that would be. Let’s all write one. One page at a time. Imagine… 

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