The world is going crazy.

If I hear one more sad story, I think my head might explode.  

I cannot deal with the endless stream of bad news, heartbreaking photos, and upset people.  I have read countless articles with opinions and not a lot of facts.  I have seen comments that make my head spin.  I have wondered what in the world is this nation coming to--and I'm worried for the sake of my children having to grow up at such a time as this.

The news isn't really that new--these events and issues have been going on for centuries.  Unfortunately, with all of our connectedness these days thanks to the 24-hour news channels and tickers across the bottom of our screens and social media, we can't filter through what is actually news and what is just sensationalism.  We have seen the biased media blame this person and that group and ignorance abounds.

I find myself doubting the goodness of mankind and the intentions of people I've never met.  I make assumptions about situations, and I don't like the way my heart wants to believe the worst about each and every story.  We have been inundated with terrible news, so why shouldn't we believe that people are despicable?

Because that's what we're told each and every minute of every hour of every day. 

My friends of color are hurting.  My friends in uniform are hurting.  My LGBTQ friends are hurting.  My conservative friends are hurting.  My liberal friends are hurting.  My church is hurting.  My country is hurting.  We're all hurting and instead of deciding to stand together and announcing enough is enough, we take it to the social media streets and destroy one another in the name of goodness and love.  We sit there in the safety of our homes and take shots at each other because we disagree, and everyone who refuses to get on board is ignorant, racist, and/or stupid while there are people literally bleeding on the streets.

I'm DONE with it all.  

I'm not trying to bury my head in the sand and hope it all goes away--because I know that it's not going to be right again until He returns.  I'm not going to sit here and pretend that I'm above it all, because I consume the information like the rest of the nation.  My life is just as messy as the next person, but I've been fortunate enough to avoid the national spotlight.  There are enormous and difficult issues that we're facing in our country, and there are a lot of ways to look at and consider these issues.

But I can control what I decide to let into my home and heart.  I can decide how much of my day I spend on social media and reading the news.  I can filter through and remove the hateful words on my sites, and I can refuse to be a part of the problem by participating in conversations that cannot be won.  I can remind myself that a lot of the news on the internet is not true, and that just because someone made a cute meme on Facebook does not make it factual.  I can refuse to post passive-aggressive status updates.  I can love my community by acting like a decent human being and I can decide to believe the best of a person in a situation until I'm proven wrong.  I can try to put myself in someone else's shoes and imagine how I would feel if it were my family, my children, my friends, and/or myself.  I can use common sense and good manners and sometimes choose to remain silent because if I wouldn't say it with a bullhorn in the middle of a crowded arena, then I don't need to post it on my public site.  I can choose to respect.  I can choose to have hard conversations with people in my immediate circles from all walks of life.  I can open my eyes and heart and try to understand different points of view.

And, most importantly, I can choose to love. 

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